How to Get Rid of Midges Infestation in the House and Outside Naturally

This article explains everything you need to know about midges and the steps to take to free your home from their infestation.
By
Phyllis McMahon
Phyllis McMahon
Research Writer
Phyllis teaches English Literature at a local college and loves writing in her free time. She’s also a great cook – her British beef Wellington is something the best res read more
reviewed
Reviewed By
Chas Kempf
Chas Kempf
Expert Consultant
Chas works in a professional pest control company and knows all the nuances of this job. Also, he’s a fantastic tennis player and loves to organize BBQ parties for his fam read more
Last updated: December 21, 2022
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You won’t love having midges lurking around your home because they are not attractive or friendly. However, without the proper knowledge of how to get rid of midges in the house and even outside, you may find yourself struggling with their infestation.

Midges are usually of two types; biting and non-biting ones. But don’t be deceived; they’re all unpleasant. In this article, you’ll learn everything you need about midges, their identification, and how to get rid of biting midges. Details on how to get rid of non-biting midges naturally and via other solutions will be discussed too.

What Are Midges?

Midges have been given names such as sandflies, pinyon gnats, moose flies, biting flies, biting gnats, five-o’s, punkies, and no-see-ums. Their similar look to mosquitoes also earned them the name “mini mosquitoes”, as they’re smaller.

Midges may be small insects, but they have more than 4,000 species worldwide. North America alone is home to at least 600 species.

As mentioned earlier, these insects come in two variants, which are the biting midges and the non-biting ones. While the biting midges look like tiny gnats, the non-biting midges are the variant that looks like smaller versions of mosquitoes. These two variants are extremely unpleasant and have their mischief.

The biting midges can bite and suck your blood. They can also make you experience skin irritation. The non-biting midges take pleasure in moving in large drones and can infest your garden and home swiftly.

What do Midges Look Like? 

Regardless of the species you’re dealing with, midges are  the kind of insects Trusted Source What is an insect? | Science Literacy and Outreach | Nebraska entomology.unl.edu you wouldn’t be delighted to have around your beautiful home. This is why knowing how to get rid of biting midges infestation is valuable. But to know the steps to follow, you must first be able to identify these insects properly. Here are a few tips that can help you identify midges to aid proper treatment;

  • The larvas of these insects have a distinctive red color. They’re also called “blood worms”, and you’ll notice them in stagnant water.
  • The male midges have a bushy appearance. There are hairs busily covering their antennae.How to Get Rid of Midges Infestation in the House and Outside Naturally
  • Midges have patterns and unique spots on their clear wings and reddish-colored six legs. Their bodies are also very fragile.
  • The male species do not bite, but the females do. These females bite easily with their saw-like mouthparts, and they are gray-colored. The biting variant is often around a 1/8th of an inch long. They’re quite small.How to Get Rid of Midges Infestation in the House and Outside Naturally
  • The male non-biting species have feathered antennae, with the females featuring long legs and a pair of wings. Generally, by size, they’re around 1/16 to 1/2 inch long.

Lastly, you can easily mistake these midges for mosquitoes due to their close resemblance. So, you need to be discerning.

What do Midges Eat and What Attracts Them? 

Midges derive their main source of nourishment from plant saps and different kinds of  high-sugar juices Trusted Source Sugary Drinks | The Nutrition Source | Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health When it comes to ranking beverages best for our health, soda and other sugary drinks fall at the bottom of the list. Learn more. www.hsph.harvard.edu . Flower nectars also provide them with the nutrition they need to grow and survive. But that’s not all.

These insects find livestock, pets, and humans to be very “attractive.”  They can easily track down people nearby due to the human scents, body heat, and CO2. These midges will swing into hunting action once they notice these clues.

Why Do Midges Bite?

Just like the female mosquitoes, female midges are the deadlier ones. But then, do not overlook the males; they’re very pesky too. But why do the female midges bite? Firstly, the biting attribute of these female midges makes them very dangerous. They can target amphibians, reptiles, and birds. They also can attack any mammal.

Some of the species of these midges only feast from dusk to night, while others bite and feed during the day. Lights usually attract midges that feed at night, and they’ll take advantage of any vulnerable large openings around the home.

Secondly, why is biting important? These female midges find it necessary so that they can start producing eggs.  The protein Trusted Source Protein for Life: Review of Optimal Protein Intake, Sustainable Dietary Sources and the Effect on Appetite in Ageing Adults - PMC With an ageing population, dietary approaches to promote health and independence later in life are needed. www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov they derive from biting helps them achieve this objective.

Step-by-step Guide to Get Rid of Midges 

There are three major methods to get rid of midges. Maybe you want to know how to get rid of midges in your yard or how to get rid of midges on the balcony; these methods provide effective solutions. And, you can choose whatever method that works best for you.

Method 1: Environmental Management 

Individuals looking for how to get rid of midges naturally will find this method to be pleasing. This includes introducing predatory species, eliminating standing water, and reducing light output.

Tip 1: Introduce Predatory Species

Causing predatory havoc in the homes these insects have built around your house is an excellent option. With the introduction of predatory species to feed on the larvae of these insects, you can curb their infestation and get rid of them.

You can visit a pet store to get midge-eating fish such as guppies, goldfish, and koi. Diving beetles, nymphs, and dragonflies can do justice too. And adult midges can be eaten by frogs, bats, and dragonflies.

Tip 2: Eliminate Standing Water

How to Get Rid of Midges Infestation in the House and Outside Naturally

Still on how to get rid of midges outside, use this simple tip to keep your home free from midges. Standing water is a favorite gathering place for midges. The accumulated muck at the bottom is where they love to hibernate. You may use a larvicide as a treatment option if you find it difficult to eliminate standing water.

Tip 3: Reduce Light Output 

Lighting is one of the things that attract these insects. And whenever it’s hotter or wetter, it’s advised you keep the lighting outside your home off. More so, shut your blinds. If it’s not necessary, don’t flood lights or lamp posts. If you do need outside lighting, look for high-pressure sodium lamps. Midges don’t find them attractive.

Method 2: Chemical Solutions

After knowing how to get rid of midges naturally, the knowledge of the correct application of chemical solutions is also helpful. And, at times, many use a combination of both to get better results.

Tip 1: Apply Larvicide

How to Get Rid of Midges Infestation in the House and Outside Naturally

Whenever you spot the water habitats where these midges are lodging, apply a larvicide. Larvicides do not only kill, but they also prevent the hatching and development of adult flies. Midge populations can be controlled with proven chemicals such as methoprene, BTI, and granular temephos. Nevertheless, ensure you don't harm the local environment Trusted Source Frontiers | Why People Harm the Environment Although They Try to Treat It Well: An Evolutionary-Cognitive Perspective on Climate Compensation Climate changes stress the importance of understanding why people harm the environment despite their attempts to behave in climate friendly ways. This paper argues that one reason behind why people do this is that people apply heuristics, originally shaped to handle social exchange, on the issues of environmental impact. www.frontiersin.org or make the midges resistant to chemicals. Don’t use larvicides repeatedly.

Tip 2: Spray as you Spot 

Adult midge flies love to rest in places like vegetation, lighted areas, and walls. Whenever you see them, spray them directly. Nevertheless, you should know that this method is best for wiping a single swarm of midges. It cannot prevent their swift re-population cycle.

Method 3: Traps and Diversions

This method has a very low probability of hurting the environment. But, precautions must be taken to avoid unnecessary hazards.

Tip 1: Attract Adult Midges with High-Intensity White-light Sources 

This is a temporary method. If you have a meeting or a gathering and don’t want to be disturbed by these pests, you may quickly give in to this option. Ensure that you place the lights where people don’t usually stay. And, the midges will be attracted to where you’ve placed these light sources.

Tip 2: Use an Electrocution Trap

How to Get Rid of Midges Infestation in the House and Outside Naturally

Why delay when you can kill? Although this method cannot affect the reproduction cycle of the larvae population, it has the potency of killing midges in large quantities. However, if the swarms are really bad, make sure you turn them off. Ensure regular cleanup to prevent a fire hazard.

Tip 3: Use a CO2 Trap 

CO2 traps operate similarly to electrocution traps. Humans exhale carbon dioxide. As a result, insect pests such as mosquitoes and midges cannot resist the attraction to this carbon dioxide. How these CO2 traps work is that they discharge CO2 and use a light source to entice midges. Once they fall for it and attempt to move closer, they’ll be pulled by the small fan where they’ll meet their end. CO2 traps are more preferable to electrocution traps because they seem to be safer. Plus, they can handle a larger number of midges.

FAQ

Where do midges go during the day?

During the day, midges typically rest in shady areas near their breeding ground. They will often congregate in large groups on leaves, branches, or other vegetation. When night falls, they become more active and will emerge to feed on blood from animals or humans.

How long do midge bites take to appear?

Midge bites usually take a few hours to appear. The bite may be initially painless, but it can become itchy and irritating. In some cases, the bite may also cause an allergic reaction.

Final Thoughts

Getting rid of midges can be a bit tough but it’s not impossible. Experts have recommended using a mix of approaches to ensure a massive reduction. The fact that these insects have the ability to reproduce in a short time makes them very tedious to control. You must eliminate water areas in your home that can help to facilitate their population. If you’re looking to apply chemical solutions, you should consider doing so during your region’s wettest and warmest months. Because this is when they’ll reach a peak in their populations. Knowing how to get rid of midges will make your home more accommodating. But make sure you don’t cause any damage to the environment in the process of controlling these insects.

References

1.
What is an insect? | Science Literacy and Outreach | Nebraska
2.
Sugary Drinks | The Nutrition Source | Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health
When it comes to ranking beverages best for our health, soda and other sugary drinks fall at the bottom of the list. Learn more.
3.
Protein for Life: Review of Optimal Protein Intake, Sustainable Dietary Sources and the Effect on Appetite in Ageing Adults - PMC
With an ageing population, dietary approaches to promote health and independence later in life are needed.
4.
Frontiers | Why People Harm the Environment Although They Try to Treat It Well: An Evolutionary-Cognitive Perspective on Climate Compensation
Climate changes stress the importance of understanding why people harm the environment despite their attempts to behave in climate friendly ways. This paper argues that one reason behind why people do this is that people apply heuristics, originally shaped to handle social exchange, on the issues of environmental impact.

References

1.
What is an insect? Science Literacy and Outreach Nebraska
2.
Sugary Drinks The Nutrition Source Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health
When it comes to ranking beverages best for our health, soda and other sugary drinks fall at the bottom of the list. Learn more.
3.
Protein for Life Review of Optimal Protein Intake, Sustainable Dietary Sources and the Effect on Appetite in Ageing Adults PMC
With an ageing population, dietary approaches to promote health and independence later in life are needed. In part, this can be achieved by maintaining muscle mass and strength as people age. New evidence suggests that current dietary recommendations ...
4.
Frontiers Why People Harm the Environment Although They Try to Treat It Well An EvolutionaryCognitive Perspective on Climate Compensation
Climate changes stress the importance of understanding why people harm the environment despite their attempts to behave in climate friendly ways. This paper argues that one reason behind why people do this is that people apply heuristics, originally shaped to handle social exchange, on the issues of environmental impact. Reciprocity and balance in social relations have been fundamental to social cooperation, and thus to survival, and therefore the human brain has become specialized by natural selection to compute and seek this balance. When the same reasoning is applied to environmentrelated behaviors, people tend to think in terms of a balance between environmentally friendly and harmful behaviors, and to morally account for the average of these components rather than the sum. This balancing heuristic leads to compensatory green beliefs and negative footprint illusionsthe misconceptions that green choices can compensate for unsustainable ones. Ecoguilt from imbalance in the moral environmental account may promote proenvironmental acts, but also acts that are seemingly proenvironmental but in reality more harmful than doing nothing at all. The current paper suggests strategies for handling this cognitive insufficiency.
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