Mosquito Control Program

Learn about safe, effective, pesticide-free mosquito management in Capitol View Park. Contact CVPCAcommunications@gmail.com for more information or to join the program.

Year Three of CVPCA’s Safe Mosquito Control Program Winds to a Close

Thank you to all the participants who made the third year of CVPCA’s Safe Mosquito Control Program a success! 

We are thrilled that new volunteers have come aboard, and we are already planning program enhancements for next year, including formalizing and expanding our buddy system, where neighbors maintain traps in the yards of those who may be unable to do so themselves. 

In addition, we are working on a new outreach initiative to help spread the word about how to reduce mosquitoes without pesticides. 

If you have questions or are interested in volunteering, please email cvpcacommunications@gmail.com. We’d love for you to join us!


Capitol View Park Launches Third Year of

Mosquito Control Program


Free Replacement Supplies and At-Home Assistance for Participants


Capitol View Park is among the growing number of local neighborhoods where residents are using mosquito traps as a safe, easy, and economical way to reduce mosquitoes without pesticides. Our community-driven program – like those in University Park, Shepherd Park, Woodside, North Woodside, Sligo Park Hills, and Takoma Park – primarily targets Asian tiger mosquitoes, an invasive species known for aggressive daytime biting, and employs methods backed by scientific research. The Capitol View Park Citizens Association’s mosquito control initiative is now in its third year, with more than 50 households participating. 


How it Works

 

Residents purchase equipment online from Biogents, a small company that specializes in mosquito traps. Two types of complementary traps are most commonly used: 1) BG-GAT Traps, which attract and capture female tiger mosquitoes when they go to lay eggs, and 2) the BG Mosquitaire Trap, which attracts and captures female tiger mosquitoes when they are seeking someone to bite for a blood meal. CVPCA promoted the use of BG-GAT Traps during the first year of the program and now, based on the experience of neighboring communities, is also recommending use of the BG Mosquitaire. For most yards, a set of two BG-GAT Traps and one BG Mosquitaire are sufficient and can be purchased as a bundle.   

 

"Our first year, we used BG-GAT mosquito traps in our yard and saw a big reduction in mosquitoes,” said CVP resident Cathy Robertson. “It helps that our neighbors are using the traps and getting rid of standing water as well. We've now supplemented our efforts by adding a BG-Mosquitaire trap to our yard, and I am happily tending to the traps for two neighbors. The more of us who participate, the fewer mosquitoes!”


While we cannot eliminate mosquitoes, we can greatly reduce their numbers through proper use of these traps. 

 

Free Replacement Supplies for Participants!


Both traps can be used year after year. The BG-GAT Trap only requires replacement sticky paper and the BG-Mosquitaire only requires replacement scent packets, both of which should be changed once per month. And great news: the CVPCA is supplying these for free to program participants while supplies last! Just contact CVPCAcommunications@gmail.com

Standing Water Removal is Critical

 

Regardless whether a resident uses traps, experts say that the most critical part of mosquito control is eliminating mosquito breeding sites on your property. This means getting rid of standing water by cleaning gutters and, at least once per week, dumping stagnant water where it collects – such as on children’s toys, tarps, flowerpot saucers, and outdoor furniture. Other spots require a different approach – for example, corrugated downspout extenders are notorious for trapping water, so experts recommend capping the end with a nylon stocking. 

 

While seemingly simple, water removal can be tricky: a mosquito needs only a capful of water to breed. What’s more, a single female tiger mosquito lays between 40 – 150 eggs at a time! This is why it’s not only vital to remove standing water but also important to set traps up outside as early as possible during mosquito season, which begins roughly May 1, given that the mosquito population grows exponentially. That's why even catching a handful of mosquitoes early in the season can make a difference. 

 

Neighbors Helping Neighbors 


As part of CVPCA’s mosquito control program, volunteers are available to assist residents with setting up their mosquito traps, placing them in optimal locations, and identifying areas susceptible to standing water. Last mosquito season, volunteer Noa Livni-Lehmann visited more than two dozen homes to help neighbors, and she has begun visiting residents this season as well.

 

“By working together, we are creating a more enjoyable summer,” Noa said. “If you want help, please reach out – I’m happy to do it!”

 

To request assistance or more information, or to volunteer, contact CVPCAcommunications@gmail.com.

Capitol View Park Citizens Association

Mosquito Control Program 2023


Frequently Asked Questions and Tips for Success  

 

 

The following FAQs supplement and update this overview of our community-driven safe mosquito control program.  

  

Q. How can I purchase mosquito traps? Which should I buy?   

  

Like other local communities, Capitol View Park residents buy their mosquito traps online from a small company called Biogents. Based on what we've learned from other neighborhoods, we recommend use of two complementary types of traps during the 2023 season: 

 

 

You can buy these as a bundle two BG-GAT Traps and one BG-Mosquitaire for a significant discount. In addition, Biogents sells “neighborhood bundles” of traps for six households at once, which provides even deeper savings, and many residents have teamed up to use this option.  

 

You can use these traps season after season. (By the way, the CVPCA is not affiliated with Biogents and receives no benefit from your participation — aside from the major benefit of community mosquito reduction!) 

 

Q. How much effort does it take to use these mosquito traps? I'm busy!   

  

Participation takes very little effort!  Simply set up the BG-GAT Traps with water, add a decaying leaf or hay, toss in a quarter of a Mosquito Dunk, and insert the sticky card. Change the sticky card and water about every two weeks, which should take about 5 minutes each time.  

 

For the BG-Mosquitaire trap, insert the scent package, put on the lid, and plug it in. Check the catch bag every few days and replace it when it's half full with mosquitoes. Change the scent package every two months.  

 

There are detailed instructions and videos on Biogents website, along with scientific literature.  

 

It's also important to get rid of standing water once a week, before mosquitoes hatch. This means talking a walk through your yard to empty flowerpot saucers, clear recycling bin lids, turn over children's toys or furniture, etc. Corrugated downspout extenders are notorious breeding grounds for tiger mosquitoes, but you can cap the ends with nylon stockings.  Cleaning gutters is also crucial. See Montgomery County information on getting rid of mosquito breeding places.   

   

Q. Can someone help me with mosquito control?   

 

Yes, a volunteer is happy to help you! Contact us if you want assistance setting up traps, locating or relocating them to the best catch sites, identifying areas of standing water (it can be tricky), and more. We've helped many neighbors already with site visits!  Contact: CVPCAcommunications@gmail.com 

 

 Q. I didn't catch many mosquitoes last year. Should I put out my BG-GAT traps again?   

 

Yes please! Two factors are essential for BG-GAT Trap success: 1) eliminating standing water, and 2) trap set-up and placement. Please see this page explaining proper trap placement. You may need to move your traps a few times to find optimal spots. Also remember to put organic matter—such as some hay or decaying oak leaves—in the water to attract the mosquitoes. We have learned that it's best to add a little but not too much organic matter, such as one large decaying oak leaf per trap. If you add too much organic matter, you may catch green flies. Oak leaves and hay are best. Grass is less effective. 

 

Remember: female tiger mosquitoes lay between 40-150 eggs at a time — and up to 300 eggs in their lifetime. The mosquito population grows exponentially. Even catching a small number of mosquitoes early in the season can make a big difference.  

 

Tiger mosquitoes don’t travel far. If you are getting bitten by these mosquitoes in your yard, they were probably born there or in adjacent properties.  

 

Q. I already bought GAT traps last year. How much does it cost to participate this season?   

  

It's free! Simply reuse the traps you purchased last year and—if you contact us right away at CVPCAcommunications@gmail.com—get free sticky cards for this season courtesy of the CVPCA.  (The free sticky cards are first-come, first-served and supplies are running low. Otherwise you should purchase them from Biogents.) 

 

For extra effectiveness, we recommend you put part of a Mosquito Dunk in the water. A $6 package of mosquito dunks should be more than enough for the whole season. If you need dunks, we are happy to bring some to you!  

 

That said, you may want to consider adding a BG-Mosquitaire trap this season to supplement your efforts. This trap attracts and captures tiger mosquitoes that are seeking someone to bite for a blood meal, whereas the BG-GAT Traps capture mosquitoes when they go to lay eggs.  

  

Q. The sticky card in my BG-GAT Trap is falling down. Any tips? 

 

Make sure that the barrier net used over your trap’s bucket is taut. You can also secure your sticky card with a paperclip: Twist open a paperclip. On the top of the transparent chamber, there is a perforated circle. Punch into the circle enough so that you can dangle the paperclip inside the trap. Secure the top end of the paperclip to the translucent chamber with tape as you tape up the hole. Next, punch out the small, perforated hole at the top of the sticky card. (If you don’t see a hole, just use a hole puncher.) Hang the sticky card on the end of the paper clip that is inside the translucent chamber. 

 

Q. Biogents also sells the BG-Mosquitaire CO2 mosquito trap. Should I buy that one? What’s the difference?   

 

We have focused our program on the BG-GAT Traps and the BG-Mosquitaire (without CO2) because these are economical and easy-to-use traps, plus they target tiger mosquitoes — an invasive species that is an aggressive, daytime biter. This mosquito is our biggest nuisance.  

 

The BG-Mosquitaire trap targets all mosquito species, and we are aware that residents in other communities are using this trap with success, but it does cost more and requires the separate purchase of CO2 cylinders. At present, our volunteers do not have direct experience with this trap, but if anyone in CVP is using it, please let us know your thoughts.  

 

Q. What are some tips for success in reducing mosquitoes? I just put out my traps and haven’t caught any mosquitoes.   

 

If you placed new traps, the plastic smell will need to air out before mosquitoes use them. 

 

Tips for success: 

 

  

Q. Is spraying pesticides an effective and safe solution for mosquitoes?   

  

The experts say NO. According to Montgomery County:  

  

"Each year, more yards are being sprayed for mosquitos. Did you know you could be poisoning your yard but mosquito populations are not being reduced?

 

Before deciding to spray your yard, know the facts. Spraying can harm you, your kids, pets and your neighbors. The chemicals can also harm birds and insects that help eat mosquitos and pollinate your yard."

  

Read more: "Are Backyard Mosquito Sprays Safe and Effective?"   

  

Still have a question? Email CVPCAcommunications@gmail.com!

Flyer from the launch of the CVPCA mosquito program in 2021:

CVP Mosquito Flyer FINAL (6-3-21).pdf

Watch the Zoom meeting where we learned about the GAT trap system and how it works:

Topic: Mosquito Management Meeting

Start Time : May 25, 2021 06:41 PM