Time out in your yard should be one of the best times you have as a family. A small party with some drinks and a barbecue should be an amazing experience outside. More often than not though, mosquitos are a serious problem to deal with.
If you don’t like the chemical methods of getting these pests out of your yard, then attracting mosquito-eating birds can be the perfect way for you. Swallows, Warblers, and other songbirds are known to be great for fighting off pests. Now, how exactly do you get the biting bugs out of your yard by attracting birds?
In this post, I will take you through how effective this strategy is, and how you can attract specific birds to help eat mosquitos in your yard.
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Are mosquito-eating birds effective?
Yes, birds are relatively effective options for controlling mosquitos. Maintaining a bird-friendly yard can significantly reduce your mosquito population. While they may not completely remove the mosquitos from your yard, they can make a considerable difference in the number of pests you are dealing with.
This is because mosquitos form just a part of their diets. Not all of it. They’ll work just like bug zappers. Birds are very beneficial additions to any landscape, and they are eco-friendly options to keep mosquitos in check.
If you want to reduce the population of mosquitos around your house in the most natural way possible, then this is a method you want to try.
6+ mosquito-eating birds: What species of birds eat mosquitos?
The species of birds that I will be listing eat flying insects, including mosquitos. They feed on them during the day while in flight. The population of mosquitos around your house can be drastically reduced if you maintain an outdoor or backyard area that attracts the birds that feed on the insects.
1. Purple Martins
Purple Martins are one of the biggest consumers of mosquitos from the Swallow family. They are also quite large, with their diet being made up of several insects. They eat flies, bees, wasps, dragonflies, moths, butterflies, flying ants, mosquitos, and many more insects.
2. Barn Swallows
Barn Swallows are also large consumers of insects. They consume roughly about 900 bugs per day. Because of this, they are much more effective in controlling the population of mosquitos.
They are known for their graceful flight pattern – they simply dive and swoop to feed on their prey. Barn Swallows go after every prey they want to feed on. This is unlike other birds, which simply open their mouths to catch any insects that come their way.
Barn Swallows feed on more mosquitos compared to Purple Martins because they fly closer to the ground.
3. Blackpoll Warblers
Blackpoll Warblers are small Canadian songbirds that feed on insects such as flies, mosquitos, and a lot more. They are bred in the northern part of South America during winter and are known for migrating to the eastern and midwestern parts of America while feeding on their prey in flight.
Unlike the two previous birds mentioned above, the Blackpoll Warblers feed on several pests apart from insects – including arthropods such as centipedes, millipedes, spiders, and lice. Fruits and seeds are also part of their diet.
These birds are not super effective when it comes to controlling the population of mosquitos, since it feeds mainly on culling insects that are hidden in leaves and branches. This means mosquitos are only a very small part of their daily diet.
That being said, Blackpoll feeds during the flight just like the two above-mentioned birds. This means there’s a good chance of them coming across mosquitos during their daily flight, making them still a helpful species for this purpose.
Nighthawks are beneficial birds that help to reduce the population of these disturbing nuisances. Mosquitos form a huge part of their diet and they have bristle-lined mouths that help to easily attack their prey from the air.
Waterfowls, like Ducks and Geese, also consume a huge amount of mosquitos. They often also take down mosquito larvae. While you’ll have to provide a pond for them, the waterfowls will also attract other species of birds that eat mosquitos around the area.
6. Downy Woodpeckers
Downy Woodpeckers are quite small in size with black and white wings. They don’t cause much trouble, like normal Woodpeckers, and they take down a good amount of mosquitos. Although their diet consists of various insects, mosquitos make up a large part of it.
There are plenty of other birds that eat mosquitos as well, including:
- Eastern Bluebirds
- Red-Eyed Vireos
- Eastern Phoebes
- House Wrens
6 ways to attract mosquito-eating birds
There are quite a lot of other birds that love eating mosquitos, and inviting them to your yard can help reduce their numbers drastically.
If you think this is something you would like to try out, then continue reading to learn how you can effectively attract these birds to come feast on the biting bugs in your yard.
Make provisions for freshwater in your yard
The first, and possibly the best way to attract mosquitos eating birds, is to simply make provisions for fresh water in your yard. Birds are always attracted to freshwater sources.
The best way to do this is to simply keep a bubbling water source, birth bath, or fountain in your yard. The birds will likely come more often during hot summer days.
Make sure it’s not standing water because this will increase the mosquitos in your yard. You can stop the mosquito larva by using mosquito pellets, adding fish to the water feature, or having the water constantly moving.
Attract birds with multiple feeders
Feeders are also a great way to attract birds to your yard. You will have to get creative with your placement though. Make sure they are spread around your yard. You will not want the birds to concentrate on one particular area while leaving other areas populated with mosquitos.
The more feeders in your yard, the higher the chance of the birds catching the mosquitos. Also, don’t forget to place the feeders in high and low places.
Use multiple seeds
Using one type of birdseed won’t do much – you need to go extra and get multiple types of seeds such as blends, sunflower seed, safflower seed, suet, and more. The more you have in your yard, the more birds of different species you’ll attract.
Birds are attracted to yards with ground cover and low shrubs. It serves as a means of protection. With more low shrubs and groundcovers being planted, the birds will likely feel more protected when they are in your yard.
They also act as shade during hot summer days and shield during stormy weather. The presence of a suitable ground cover will invite birds to your yard and you’ll stand a better chance of reducing the population of biting bugs on your property.
Invest in birdhouses
Every living thing needs a house and so do birds. To attract them to your yard, you simply need to invest in getting birdhouses and make sure to place them in different spots.
Just like other things mentioned above, you must spread out the birdhouses around your yard. This way the birds are likely to move around the yard catching mosquitos rather than being in one particular spot.
Keep your pets indoors
It is important you keep your pets indoors. If they have to come out, you should supervise their outing.
Your mosquito eaters will likely not want to come close to your yard if they notice your pets are outdoors to scare them away. To get the most effective result, after practicing all the above-mentioned ideas, you must keep your pets indoors.
Keep up with maintenance
Make sure you keep the items well maintained. Keep the water clean, get more seeds, repair and build more birdhouses.
Also make sure, you don’t attract more mosquitos. Mosquitos like to lay their eggs into stagnant water and wet debris (e.g. leaves in gutters, soil in non-draining pots). By checking your property for these things, you might keep the population at bay.
Wait for the results
If you have made provision for all the items listed above, all you need to do is to wait for the results. The birds might not start flying over your yard immediately, but with time they will.
Once one comes around and notices how bird-friendly your home is, others will follow suit. Soon you’ll have them flying all over your yard and you can listen to their songs.