You're probably not going to see this on a brochure: "Nestled in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains, against the banks of the Tennessee River, Knoxville serves as the perfect blend of southern hospitality and mosquitoes." But it is true. Mosquitoes love Knoxville. Not for its festivals, nightlife or art culture. They love people. More accurately, they love the blood that is inside people. If you have blood, they're going to love you. But not all people are as attractive to mosquitoes. See if you can determine which category you fall into.
People that expel more carbon dioxide. Mosquitoes use carbon dioxide emissions to zero in on their food source. If you just finished jogging or you are carrying a baby in your belly, your extra exertion will attract mosquitoes.
People with higher levels of acids on their skin, like uric acid. If you love soda, mosquitoes will love you for it.
People who wear darker colors. Mosquitoes fly low and use silhouettes to find their targets. If you wear lighter colored clothing, you can ward off bites.
Mosquitoes do not prefer:
Anyone wearing a repellent with DEET in it. Repeated studies show that DEET is effective at keeping mosquitoes away. A formula with between 10% to 30% DEET can protect a wearer for about five hours, according to a study led by Mark Fradin, Ph.D., a researcher with Chapel Hill Dermatology. Though DEET has a consistent safety record, you can always spray it on a long sleeved shirt if you prefer to not have it on your skin.
People wearing clothing infused with the chemical insecticide permethrin. This method has been used by the United States military for years. One soldier said, "I wore them in the jungles of South Africa; I would recommend them to anyone going out into the woods."
Do you want to prevent mosquitoes from landing on you, but prefer to not get involved with chemicals? Greg Baumann, senior scientist with the National Pest Management Association says you can make your Knoxville yard resistant to mosquitoes with Integrated Pest Management. It involves eliminating breeding sites that invite mosquitoes to reproduce on your property. Unclog leaves from gutters, remove items from your yard where water can collect, and fill in areas of standing water. You may also want to consider enlisting the help of a professional. They can eradicate adult mosquitoes on your property and destroy eggs before they hatch. In the battle against mosquitoes, the best defense is a good offense.