I've had my small 6x16 greenhouse running for a few months now with an IBC setup and grow beds. I've discovered that even in southern California, mosquito's can thrive in the right environment.
Sadly, an aquaponics system in a greenhouse seems to be exactly what mosquito's need.
I read about and setup carbon dioxide trap (2 liter bottle with sugar and yeast).
I setup a bug zapper and killed a few but many seem to avoid it.
I also setup a citronella candle.
Any suggestions for preventing these pests? It's not fun working in a greenhouse full of mosquito's.
Can you legally have mosquito fish in Calif.? If so, I'd add some of these to the system. The fish will eat the mosquito larva. No more booming mosquito population.
Try to get a mosquito net set draped over the entry of your greenhouse (and screen the vents and windows), to keep more from entering.
Best of luck to you.
Seems there are a number of different types of mosquito fish? A local pet store suggested goldfish will eat mosquito's.
So far the DIY mosquito trap with a 2 liter bottle failed to catch anything. A bug zapper killed a few but left many untouched.
What kind of fish do you have in your system, if any? Seems to me a mosquito would not stand a chance in my system.
I have a few Tilapia that are fairly good sized now. They rarely eat from the surface and are a little timid tending to eat food that sinks. The mosquito's initially started in a settling filter I built and tried to grow duck weed in. This stagnant water was the initial breeding grounds that I've since sealed and covered.
I also tried a black and decker mosquito attractant that clips onto a bug zapper - this killed zero mosquito's. Next on my list are the Mosquito Dunks which disperse a bacteria that kills mosquito larvae. I'm not thrilled using this but I'm running out of options. I can also try some other fish but I'm worried about introducing a new species and having problems. I recently lost quite a few tilapia from an aggressive male which left me with 3 fish.
I have had mosquitos in my system that had goldfish in it. When I added Mosquito Fish (scientific name -Gambusia somethingorother - forgot the last part) that I got from a pond supply store, it ended the mosquito larva in the life cycle, and greatly relieved the mosquito population. They look a lot like large guppies to me. Hope that helps.
something to try if you can stand the smell is take an aluminum pie plate and fill it half way up with diesel fuel. I know that for some reason it attracts them and they drown in it. this knowledge is from experience and working on heavy equipment for a living.
An update to the mosquito problem. Trying several methods, I've only been able to control the number of mosquito's in my system. The sources of water they can lay eggs are in the fish tank, filter tank, deep water trough, and NFT's. These mosquito's lay their eggs above the waterline stuck to a surface. I believe they may be asian tiger mosquito's. No idea how they got inside as my greenhouse is fairly well sealed but it only takes one to spawn the infestation.
To combat these, I've covered every one of them with window screening material. The sump tanks are harder to screen as the drain pipes are large and block a clean screen seal. The NFT's and deep water trough's are filled with plants and should have no place for an adult mosquito to enter.
This coupled with sticky traps at the top of the greenhouse where they seem to move to in the evening (warmest spot in the greenhouse) a bug zapper with a mosquito attractant pad, a dust buster which I use to suck up any that I find when I'm inside seems to keep their numbers in check.
That's about all I'm achieving right now. Each day, I find young mosquito's in the fish tank (under the screen) which have crawled out. On occasion I also see them fly up from the grow beds (hydroton).
I've extended my input pipes to the grow beds to keep open sources of water below the surface of the grow bed.
BTI or BT (Mosquito dunks and many others) didn't seem to do much. I way over applied the suggested number and added a dunk to the tank, filter and sump. I didn't see any drop in their population.
I'm moving on to mosquito fish and a product called Altosid Pro-G Mosquito Larvicide. This claims to be safe and affects larvae growth.
My Tilapia may be eating a few mosquito's but I've yet to see it.
At this point, my system is breeding mosquito's and I don't think repellents will have much impact (the candle did little as they can't easily get outside the greenhouse.
I strongly suggest anyone setting up a greenhouse take the extra time to caulk and seal the heck out of it. I wish I had enough space for a containment room that seals off the entrance but that's not practical for a hobby green house.
If anyone has any other tips, they'd be appreciated.
Be careful that they are not fungus gnats as these look like mosquito's and the lava will attack the roots of your seedlings. The eggs will travel around your system. Mosquito dunks as suggested by another post will do the trick but things take time as the life cycle may be more than a month.
im very new to aquaponics but not to gardening or raising fish. just now adding the two togather in the same system :/ (ya my brain is slow like that sometimes lol). anyway just about all minnow types or even freshwater "pet trade" small fish eat mosquito larva. in fact I keep buckets or tanks with "greenwater" for the fry of my freshwater "pet fish" to eat, and for the minnows I raise for bait. that "greenwater is a magnet for mosquitos and I scoop the larva out with a fishnet to feed to the bigger fish/breeders.
nice thing about esp the guppys, they live in horrible water consishions and still breed regular.....same goes for the "Siamese fighting fish/betas) maybe add a few of those to your settling tank?
mosquito dunks kill both mosquito larvae and fungus gnat larvae (bt-i)
Have you been bitten by your mosquitos? Most likely they are midge, not mosquito. The adults look the same, except that midge have fuzzier antenae. It is rare to see a mosquito breed in an active AP system, let alone become a problem. Post a pic of a "mosquito" from a sticky trap.
Below is a midge, the larvae of which is a thin, segmented little red worm that hides in little scum tubes, and is common even in tanks with fish (AKA bloodworms). Notice the fuzzy antenae.