Summer is right around the corner, bringing longer days and warm evenings. For many of us, it’s the beginning of camping and barbeque season, where we can enjoy our time outside amongst the birds and the bees, and our less welcome friend, the mosquito. With the first buzz in your ear or bite on our uncovered skin, most of us are soon on the hunt for defenses against these annoying pests.
For those of us who would prefer not to cover ourselves head to toe in Deet mosquito repellent 24/7, we are on the lookout for alternative and effective ways to keep mosquitos at bay. One such alternative for mosquito control that people often use is Tiki Torches. If you aren’t sure what a Tiki Torch is, it is essentially a torch (tiki torch fuel and flame) mounted on a tall pole.
Tiki Torches originated in the mid-20th century in the United States. Tiki Torches provided lighting and a tropical ambiance to our backyards or camping areas. However, the smoke that rises from the torch also has added benefits, including keeping away mosquitos and other night critters. But what kind of Tiki Torch fuel and stand should you buy, and just how effective are they at keeping your campsite or backyard mosquito free? We will also answer what causes mosquitos and how to avoid them when camping.
What Kind of Tiki Torch is Most Effective To Repel Mosquitoes?
Tiki Torches will only fend off mosquitos around their immediate vicinity in all truthfulness. That means you would have to be sitting near the Tiki Torch fuel to be within the mosquito control zone. However, if you are still planning to use a Tiki Torch fuel to fend off mosquitos, your best bet is to use citronella tiki torch fuel-based Tiki Torches, as they are the most effective at providing mosquito control.
Citronella extract, originating from the Citronella plant, is a commonly explored option for mosquito repellent because of its various compounds that show repellency against mosquitos. Citronella candles and Tiki Torches are easily accessible and found at many home and garden or camping stores.
You could, of course, attempt to create a larger mosquito-free zone by using a complement of Tiki Torches to surround your camp areas. While the smoke from a normal Tiki Torch will also prevent mosquitos, the added benefit of the citronella may improve the effectiveness of the Tiki Torch at repelling mosquitos.
What Causes Mosquitos?
The most common cause for many mosquitos is ample mosquito breeding areas near your campsite. Mosquitos breed in standing water. This includes stagnant pools and puddles that remain after rain or a high local water table. That is also why mosquitos are often near lakes and slow-moving streams or rivers. Damp and warm conditions are the perfect breeding conditions for mosquito eggs to hatch and cause mosquito infestations.
Other causes of mosquitos include tall grass or thick vegetation, which also provide shelter for mosquitos from the elements, such as wind. Whenever you walk through the grass or set up your tent in a grassy area, you notice more mosquitos than you would if you were to use a gravel tent site.
Mosquitos have also adapted senses that can detect certain smells, including carbon dioxide (which we exhale when we breathe) and sweat or body odor. This means that the larger your camping group is, the more likely you will attract a larger number of mosquitos. Other strong scents, such as perfumes, essential oil, body sprays, or hair sprays may also work in attracting mosquitoes.
How to Keep Mosquitoes Out of Your Tent/ Camp Tiki Torch and Other Gear
Although there’s no sure way to completely prevent mosquitos from bothering you while you camp, there are several things you can do to avoid the number of mosquito bites you collect over your trip. For instance, avoiding camping near standing water, tall grass, and shady areas can all help reduce the number of mosquitos in the nearby area. Using mosquito repellents such as Citronella oil candles or Tiki Torch fuel, mosquito coils, bug spray, or plant-based repellents can also minimize bites.
To prevent bites while you sleep, always remember to close your tent or trailer to prevent mosquitos from entering. Often, they will hide during the daytime and come out at night when it is cooler and more difficult for you to see and catch them. You may also try setting up a mosquito net in your tent or trailer to ensure that no mosquitoes have gotten inside your sleep area. Prevention is the best way to avoid that annoying buzzing in your ear while you sleep and many bites when you wake up in the morning.
The last thing to consider is what you wear. Mosquitos are attracted to darker colors. Try wearing lighter tones and ensure that your skin is covered as much as possible. If it is hot out, try finding loose-fitting, thin layers that will allow you to remain cool while also being covered. Then use some repellent, whether it is a Deet bug spray, citronella bracelet, etc., to prevent them from attacking your exposed skin.
Camping is an exciting experience for those who love to spend time in nature. Unfortunately for us, it also means being exposed to the nasty elements of nature, including mosquitos. However, there are several ways that you can prevent or repel mosquitos, including a Tiki Torch, campsite location, clothing choice, and more, to minimize the number of bites you get over your trip.