Tech Notes

Prepping for mosquito season: best practices for barrier applications

By Nicky Gallagher, Technical Services Manager, Syngenta Professional Pest Management

As part of an integrated mosquito management plan, barrier applications can provide a significant reduction in mosquito numbers and bites. This involves treating vegetation like trees, bushes and shrubbery from ground level up to a height of about 10 feet. 

Whether you currently offer barrier treatments or are considering entering the mosquito market, here are some important tips to prepare for success.

Get the right equipment

  • Mist-blowers: These are ideal for barrier applications, as they force insecticide droplets into dense vegetation and the undersides of leaves. Circular arm motions can help force leaves up to expose their undersides, where mosquitoes often rest.
  • Water-Sensitive Paper (WSP): This type of paper, which is yellow but stains blue when exposed to aqueous spray droplets, is excellent for evaluating spray distributions, swath widths, droplet densities and spray penetrations. Place WSP at various heights and depths within vegetation to determine which equipment setting provides adequate coverage. After the target area has been sprayed, allow WSP to dry and check the droplet pattern.
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Water droplet dispersion on WSP using a STIHL® SR 200 mist-blower at two different settings and full throttle (top row was discharge setting 1, and bottom row was discharge setting 3). Vegetation was treated to the point of runoff. In this example, knob setting 3 provided thorough coverage. Information and photo courtesy of Syngenta.

  • Service containers: For a more uniform solution, mix insecticide in a labeled service container, rather than mixing directly in the mist-blower tank.

Reduce mosquito breeding sites

Natural areas or man-made objects that collect standing water are ideal mosquito breeding sites. Examples include bromeliad plants, ditches, plant pots, gutters, bird baths and neglected pools or fish ponds. If the water source cannot be removed, determine if the area can be treated with a larvicide or insect growth regulator (IGR). Containers should also be dumped and scrubbed weekly, as eggs of container-breeding mosquitoes can stick to their sides.

Protect customers with confidence

Once you’re ready to conduct a barrier application, choose a program with proven treatment protocols, technical support and performance guarantees. The SecureChoice℠ Mosquito Assurance Program from Syngenta offers all these benefits with mosquito population suppression for up to 60 days.

The program features the combination of Demand® CS insecticide and Archer® IGR. Demand CS contains Syngenta-patented iCAP™ technology, which releases thousands of microcaps of different sizes for both immediate and residual control. Archer interrupts mosquitoes’ reproductive cycles, causing them to lay non-viable eggs and preventing existing mosquitoes from becoming egg-laying adults.

Manage customer expectations

Residential mosquito treatments are about managing populations and reducing the chances of being bitten. Avoid any claims of complete mosquito elimination or disease prevention. Ensure your customer agreement clearly states the treatment objectives, and what responsibilities the homeowner has if signing a contract. Syngenta offers free educational materials you can give homeowners about reducing breeding sites, treatment explanations and more. 

With the proper knowledge and tools in place, you can make mosquito barrier treatments effective for your business and your customers. For more information, please visit www.SyngentaPMP.com/Mosquito.

©2018 Syngenta. Important: Always read and follow label instructions. Some products may not be registered for sale or use in all states or counties and/or may have state-specific use requirements. Please check with your local extension service to ensure registration and proper use. Archer®, Demand®, For Life Uninterrupted™, iCAP™, SecureChoice℠ and the Syngenta logo are trademarks or service marks of a Syngenta Group Company. All other trademarks are property of their respective owners. Syngenta Customer Center: 1-866-SYNGENT(A) (796-4368).


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© Syngenta. Important: Always read and follow label instructions. Some products may not be registered for sale or use in all states or counties and/or may have state-specific use requirements. Please check with your local extension service to ensure registration and proper use. The trademarks displayed or otherwise used herein are trademarks or service marks of a Syngenta Group Company or third parties. Syngenta Customer Center: 1-866-SYNGENT(A) (796-4368).