Own a Toronto Waterfront Home? A Few Solutions to Your Midge Problem
Midges – they’re a blight on every waterfront homeowner in Toronto. These biting flies can range from being a nuisance to being quite harmful, which is why you must take control to banish them from your property.
Are you not quite sure how to stop a midge invasion? Here are some tips to help you manage your midge problem so you can enjoy the outdoors this summer.
How to Spot a Midge
Midges often get mistaken for mosquitoes, probably because they look a lot alike! There are non-biting midges that can be up to a half-inch long. Biting midges are often smaller, about one-eighth of an inch.
Every sort of midge has a very fragile-looking body. They have six legs and are often reddish in colour with clear wings that have unique patterns and spots on them. A male midge has antennae covered with tiny hairs, making it look like it has a bushy unibrow.
How to Spot a Midge Problem
How do you know you have a problem with midges? Well, if you’re not constantly swatting them away, then you should also look around the water’s edge on your property. Also, look at the places around your home or in your garden where water tends to accumulate. Slow-moving streams, wet mud, ponds, and sand are ideal environments for a midge to call home.
To see if midges live there, simply look for them flying around. Midges lay their eggs on vegetation that surrounds water sources. You might find their larvae there too.
How to Treat Midges
When targeting midges, you must first take away the environment they like to live in. You may not be able to eliminate a large body of water, but you can eliminate the places where water may like to pool around your home. Remove any standing water sources such as birdbaths. Make sure to cover swimming pools and empty buckets of water, too.
If you can reduce the sources of water close to your home, then you can reduce the places midges like to live and reproduce and reduce their number too. Once you’ve done that, then you can call in a professional pest control company to spray and further curb the midge population.
Once you have midges under control, you don’t want them to come back! That’s why you should take these steps to ensure they don’t make a return:
- Shield your home – Make sure all of your doors and windows are properly screened. You can also use mesh wire or other materials to fill the gaps around electrical wires and plumbing so that midges cannot enter your home. You don’t want a midge biting you in your sleep, after all.
- Think about outdoor lighting – Just as with any other flying insect, midges are attracted to lights. Make sure to use dim lights and set them up away from doorways to help reduce the chances of attracting midges to your home. You can also use yellow sodium vapour lights for outdoor lighting that will help to keep the midges away. Any lights tinted orange or pink will also help.
Midges can be a very irritating pest, especially for those that live on the waterfront. Use a combination of pest control applications and the elimination of standing water near your home to help control them. That way, you have the best chances yet for a midge-free summer!
About the Author:
Daniel Mackie, co-owner of Greenleaf Pest Control, is a Toronto pest control expert and a regular guest on HGTV. He is renowned in the industry as an innovator of safe, effective pest control solutions. Mackie and business partner Sandy Costa were the first pest control professionals in Canada to use detection dogs and thermal remediation for the successful eradication of bed bugs. In his free time, he is an avid gardener.