Living with Bugs in Cottage Country: Are the bugs bugging you this season?

August 3, 2022

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Are the bugs bugging you this season?

Whether you have spent a fair bit of time outdoors or you are new to a cottage life

Below are some helpful tips to make the most of the outdoors this spring/summer at the cottage.


  1. Landscaping – A well-groomed yard reduces the places for insects to hide
  2. Avoid standing water – Mosquitos lay eggs in standing water and moisture = earwigs and slugs. Store flower pots upside down, change bird bath water at least twice each week and consider filling any low dips in your yard that collect water after a heavy rain.
  3. Use Citronella candles and torches – An effective range for one candle or


    torch is 2 meters (6ft) **Never leave open flames unattended, especially on dry/windy days**

  4. Secure trash and compost – This will deter earwigs and flies from gathering. Also, this will help keep bears from wanting to explore on your property.
  5. Install a bat box(es) – A single bat can catch hundreds of insects in just 1 hour! Canadian Wildlife Federation resource for bat box installation and how to build your own bat box:


  1. Plant bug repellent plants –       The following plants (this is not an exhausted list) are best planted near seating areas in your yard or garden areas: Lemongrass, Marigolds, Lavender, Catnip
  2. Install patio fans – The wind pushed mosquitos away and will keep you cool
  3. Use lighter exterior paint – A couple main factors that attract biting insects are heat and carbon dioxide. Since darker colours absorb light, they radiate heat which attracts more insects, meaning a lighter paint-job will help deter these bugs
  4. Use yellow outdoor lights – Unfortunately bugs are attracted to nearly all light spectrums but they are least attacked to the red spectrum, so yellow lights would be best
  5. Trap/zap them – You can hang bug zappers use propane-powered traps. Both can be found at local hardware stores
  6. Apply larvicide tablets – Add larvicide to your decorative ponds or rain barrels. Larvicide contains bacteria that is only harmful to mosquito larvae and effective at destroying the mosquitos before they reach the adult stage
  7. Essential Oils – Water with lavender or eucalyptus

Hiking, Boating & Exploring the Outdoors:

  1. Wear loose fitting long sleeves and lighter material pants that are light coloured. Not only is this

    helpful to keep you cooler in warmer weather, but white/light clothing will allow you to spot a tick or other insect that has hitched a ride

  2. Tuck your shirt into your pants and if you are wearing socks tuck your pant legs into your socks. This will stop ticks or other insects from coming in contact with your skin
  3. Use bug repellents with DEET, as that is the most effective (use as directed on the container) or try other more natural bug repellents like BioShield
  4. Wear a hat and bandana (loosely) and spray with bug repellent prior to putting them on
  5. Use a head and/jacket net


Hopefully these tactics will help lessen the number of bugs you will encounter or lessen the amount of bug bites you will get. But when the bugs just won’t let up be sure to have after bite and/or an anti-itch cream on standby because no matter what you do, those pesky bugs will always be there.




Information Resource: