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: January 12, 2023

Mosquito Dunks: What Are They and How to Use Them? (Winter 2023)

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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: January 12, 2023
Pest Products is reader-supported. We may earn a commission through products purchased using links on this page. Learn more about our process here
Ideal for
  • Eradicating mosquito larvae in a short period of time
  • Long-term effectiveness and control over 30 days
  • Safe management of mosquito larvae in standing water
  • Eco-conscious homeowners and businesses
Main features
  • Cost-effective method for controlling mosquito larvae
  • Safe for humans, pets, livestock, and insect pollinators
  • One Dunk treats an area of 100 square feet efficiently
  • Not suitable for eradicating adult mosquitos
Editor's Rating
9.3
out of 10
  • Efficacy
    9.1
  • Ease of use
    9.7
  • Ingredients
    9.2
  • Overall
    9.3
Users’ Rating
4.3
out of 5
92 Users’ Rating
rating rating rating rating rating
rating
rating rating rating rating rating
4.3
out of
5
92 Users’ Rating
  • 5 stars
    46%
  • 4 stars
    45%
  • 3 stars
    8%
  • 2 stars
    2%
  • 1 stars
    0%
Add your rating:

Mosquito Dunks, a trademark of Summit Chemicals, is a product specifically designed to kill larvae before they turn into pesky-biting adults! Instead of spraying mosquito-killing toxins into the air around you, Mosquito Dunks can be used safely while getting rid of the problem effectively. Our in-depth Mosquito Dunks review gives a comprehensive evaluation of this product used to stop larvae in their track before they become an irritation to humans and pets. We’ll talk you through the various features of Mosquito Dunks, as well as all the pros and cons you need to know before using this product in your home or office.

Specifications

Works against
Mosquitos
Mosquitos
BTI, bacteria toxic only to mosquito larvae
Covers
100 square feet
Lasts
for 30 days or more
Weight
11.5 oz

Mosquito Dunks Review

To help you get a better overview of Mosquito Dunks, we’re reviewing features such as overall performance and functions, ingredients, ease of use, and coverage. You’ll get all the safety information you need to know about this product, as well as the maintenance and durability of the dunks. A list of noteworthy key features is also included.

Overall performance and functions

Mosquito Dunks: What Are They and How to Use Them? (Winter 2023)
Application is made by placing the lightweight dunks in standing water and leaving it to float on the surface where mosquito larvae are located.

Mosquito Dunks resemble miniature donuts, measuring approximately two inches in diameter, with a small hole in the center. They work by releasing a natural mosquito larvicide into the surrounding water, which kills larvae before it turns into biting insect. Mosquito Dunks are effective for up to 30 days, making them an ideal long-term larvicide. The Dunks are placed into any standing water, and a bacterium, which is toxic to all mosquito species, is slowly released. Mosquito larvae feed on the product as it moves through the water. A laboratory and semi-field evaluation study Trusted Source Laboratory and semi-field evaluation of Mosquito Dunks against Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus larvae (Diptera: Culicidae) - PubMed Laboratory bioassays and semi-field studies were conducted on the efficacy and longevity of Mosquito Dunks (7,000 ITU/mg Bti) in order to determine the concentration-response relationship and the effectiveness on the potency of the Bti product against Aedes mosquito species based on the WHO protocol. pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov revealed that Mosquito Dunks performed satisfactorily—as high as 80%–at 11 weeks post-treatment. Mosquito Dunks are highly efficient in eradicating large populations of mosquito larvae in a short period of time while staying effective for up to a month.

Ingredients

The key active ingredient in Mosquito Dunks responsible for killing larvae is the bacterium Bacillus thuringiensis subspecies Israelis (Bti). It’s the first found Bacillus thuringiensis Trusted Source Bacillus thuringiensis subsp. israelensis and Its Dipteran-Specific Toxins - PMC Mosquitoes are an enormous public health menace in transmitting various tropical diseases and generally as a nuisance. Many species of the genera AnophelesAedes and Culex are vectors of, e.g., malaria, yellow fever, dengue fever, hemorrhagic fever and lymphatic filariasis. Despite the use of synthetic pesticides over the past 70 years, mosquito-borne diseases are still threatening half of the world’s population. Malaria remains one of the leading causes of morbidity and mortality and kills about 660,000 people a year, mainy young children in Africa. www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov used for its effectiveness as a biological control agent against mosquitos, gnats, and black flies. Inert ingredients include granular cork bark and a plaster compound.

While Bti is highly effective as a larvicide against mosquito larvae, there’s no evidence they’re harmful to other creatures such as dragonflies, bees, butterflies, or ladybugs. This, in itself, makes this product a safe larvicide for organic gardening and, as such, has been approved by the United States Environmental Protection Agency Trusted Source Our Mission and What We Do | US EPA Mission Statement of the EPA — to protect human health and to safeguard the natural environment – air, water and land – upon which life depends. www.epa.gov (US EPA.)

Coverage

Mosquito Dunks is a floating sustained-release larvicide placed in standing water. When the Dunks start to dissolve, releasing the bacterium, it travels through the water. Depending on how much you use, different coverage can be reached.

  • ¼ Dunk: 1 to 5 square ft. coverage
  • ½ Dunk: 5 to 25 square ft. coverage
  • 1 Dunk: 25 to 100 square ft. coverage

Coverage and treatment are on the water surface, and the Mosquito Dunks are effective for up to a month or even slightly longer. When calculating how many dunks to use on a dry surface, it’s recommended to place one Mosquito Dunk for every 10 square meters of land that will become wet.

Ease of use

Mosquito Dunks: What Are They and How to Use Them? (Winter 2023)
They can be used in areas that collect water, such as basements, elevator shafts, and sump pumps. Mosquito Dunks can be used in puddles, rain gutters, tree holes, septic tanks, and even pet water bowls. Make sure your dog doesn’t eat them, though, as it would be a waste of money!

It couldn’t get any easier using Mosquito Dunks to annihilate a population of larvae before they grow into biting adults, with some species even responsible for transmitting diseases Trusted Source Mosquito-Borne Diseases | NIOSH | CDC Mosquito-borne diseases are those spread by the bite of an infected mosquito. Diseases that are spread to people by mosquitoes include Zika virus, West Nile virus, Chikungunya virus, dengue, and malaria. www.cdc.gov . Dunks can be broken into portions, depending on the size of the area being treated. Dunks can be placed in standing water, such as:

  • Fish ponds
  • Water troughs
  • Birdbaths
  • Abandoned tires, rain barrels, and unused swimming pools

Don’t place dunks into swimming pools treated with chlorine, as this chemical element will keep mosquito larvae at bay. Active pool pumps and cleaners will also prevent larvae from establishing in a swimming pool. Mosquito Dunks work best in stagnant areas, so avoid placing them in running or churning water. When using the dunks, simply remove them from the packaging, break into the right size if necessary, and put them in the water. The product will then float on the surface while slowly releasing the Bti into the water. Even after placing them on a dry surface, just wait! When the area gets wet, the Dunk will float up to the top of the water’s surface.

Safety

Because Mosquito Dunks are meant to only kill mosquito larvae, fungus gnats, and black flies, they’re safe to use in areas used by livestock, pets, other creatures, and humans. However, the manufacturers of Mosquito Dunks recommend not using them to treat drinking water intended for human consumption and to avoid direct contact with the skin, eyes, and clothing. Because Dunks only use a naturally-occurring bacterium to control mosquito larvae and not toxic chemicals, this product is considered safe. A publication issued by the New York Department of Health Trusted Source Guidance when using Mosquito Dunks Dunks (larvicide) utilize a naturally-occurring type of bacteria to control mosquitoes before they become flying, biting, potentially disease-carrying adults. www.health.ny.gov state that Mosquito Dunks can cause minor irritations to bare skin and eyes. They recommend washing hands thoroughly after handling the product.

The dunks can be safely used on or near plants, including fruit and vegetables. You can even dilute dunks in water used for watering pot plants. Neither the soil nor the plants will be contaminated, and it’s safe to consume plants that have been exposed to Mosquito Dunks. All animals are safe, too, even if water treated with Mosquito Dunks seeps into lakes, dams, or rivers. And, if your child happens to drink water treated with dunks, don’t panic. Just keep a close eye on any unusual but extremely rare symptoms and speak to your doctor if you’re concerned. Mosquito Dunks, even when dissolved, don’t cause any damage to equipment such as:

  • Water pumps
  • Water filters
  • Thermometers
  • Light fixtures

While you don’t have to wear gloves or safety goggles when handling the dunks, it’s always advisable to avoid skin or eye contact.

Maintenance

Mosquito Dunks: What Are They and How to Use Them? (Winter 2023)
While most mosquito species become inactive during the winter months, consumers in some countries with warmer temperatures in the cooler season may still benefit from using the dunks.

Mosquito Dunks are highly effective in maintaining mosquito populations, and it’s important to start using them as soon as the breeding season begins in spring. While the dunks effectively kill off the larvae, they have no impact on the adults. Replenishing with fresh dunks every 30 days or so will help keep the larvae under control while the adults are breeding and laying eggs. It takes up to 48 hours before the larvae begin to die off, so factor that in when using the dunks as a form of mosquito control.

Durability

Mosquito Dunks are specifically designed to float on the water surface while releasing Bti. The dunks can withstand most conditions, although it’s recommended to stake them with sticks or string in areas subjected to heavy rains or wind. This way, the dunks aren’t washed out or blown away during a storm or flooding.

The dunks aren’t prone to disintegrating under harsh UV rays, so placing them in direct sunlight should have little impact on their effectiveness as a mosquito control agent. However, the units aren’t as durable against fish, turtles, and amphibians who love to eat them! In areas such as fish ponds, it’s recommended to place the dunks in stockings. This protects them while still letting water flow through for the dispersal of the bacterium. The dunks can be used as a form of pre-flooding treatment. Placing them in dry areas that will become mosquito breeding grounds when flooded helps to keep the population under control. Mosquito Dunks are durable enough to withstand both dry and wet conditions while still performing optimally.

Price tag

Using Mosquito Dunks is one of the most cost-effective ways of controlling larvae during the breeding season. Compared to sprays and other methods used to get rid of adult mosquitos, the dunks can effectively and safely remove large populations of larvae before they grow into biting insects. This reduces the need to spray expensive chemicals to get rid of adult mosquitos.

Packaging includes 2, 6, or 20 dunks, so if you’re only looking to control a small area, you can buy smaller quantities and save money, rather than buying bulk and not using them. One Dunk is sufficient for treating 100 square feet of water, equivalent to the size of a single garage. However, buying the 20s pack is more cost-effective if you’re treating water every month as part of a maintenance plan. When it comes to convenience, ease of use and long-term effectiveness, the price tag is negligible. No other tools, such as insecticide sprayers or fogging machines, are required for application, making Mosquito Dunks an affordable mosquito-control agent for homeowners.

Key features

Key features worth noting when deciding if Mosquito Dunks is the solution for you include:

  • Handling: Resembling tiny briquets, the dunks are solid and dry. This makes it easier to handle them without worrying about them breaking down or contaminating the handler.
  • Scent: The dunks have a light aroma that isn’t unpleasant when placed in water. In most cases, the scent becomes unnoticeable.
  • Ecofriendly: Bti is a naturally occurring bacterium Trusted Source Bti for Mosquito Control | US EPA Bti is a biological or a naturally occurring bacterium found in soils. (Bti is short for Bacillus thuringiensis subspecies israelensis.) It contains spores that produce toxins that specifically target and only affect the larvae of the mosquito, blackfly and fungus gnat. EPA has registered five different strains of Bti found in 48 pesticide products that are approved for use in residential, commercial and agricultural settings primarily for control of mosquito larvae. www.epa.gov found in soil and is non-toxic to the environment. The packaging is recyclable.
  • Long-term extermination: Dunks are effective for up to a month, making them one of the cheapest, most effective long-term agents for exterminating large populations of mosquito larvae.
  • Storage and long shelf life: Mosquito Dunks should be kept in dry, cool places that are well-ventilated. Dunks have a two-year shelf life giving ample time for them to be used up before losing their effectiveness.
  • Disposal: The dunks are eco-friendly, containing no chemicals, so they can be easily and safely disposed of if necessary without causing any harm to the environment, humans, or animals.
PROS CONS
·         Contain no toxic chemicals hazardous to humans and other living organisms

·         Excellent for controlling large populations of mosquito larvae

·         Cost-effective for long-term eradication of mosquito larvae

·         Effective in standing water with a minimum depth

·         Safe disposal and eco-friendly

·         Little or no scent

·         Requires no equipment or safety gear during application

·         Fast-working with larvae dying within 48 hours of application

·         It can cause minor skin and eye irritation

·         Doesn’t kill adult mosquitos

·         It can become costly if eaten by fish, frogs, and other creatures

·         It can be washed away in strong flowing water if not anchored

·         It may not be easy to break into smaller portion sizes for coverage below 100 square feet

·         Need to be applied every 30 days for effective control during the breeding season

·         Need to use chemicals to eradicate adult mosquitos if they become a nuisance

Conclusion

Mosquito Dunks are one of the safest, most eco-friendly, and cost-effective long-term larvicide products on the market for eradicating mosquitos and black flies. Our comprehensive Mosquito Dunk review demonstrates just how highly effective this product is for controlling this pesky insect when you live close to large or small areas of standing water. They’re easy to use and convenient so give them a go when eradicating the next population of mosquito larvae on your property!

References

1.
Laboratory and semi-field evaluation of Mosquito Dunks against Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus larvae (Diptera: Culicidae) - PubMed
Laboratory bioassays and semi-field studies were conducted on the efficacy and longevity of Mosquito Dunks (7,000 ITU/mg Bti) in order to determine the concentration-response relationship and the effectiveness on the potency of the Bti product against Aedes mosquito species based on the WHO protocol.
2.
Bacillus thuringiensis subsp. israelensis and Its Dipteran-Specific Toxins - PMC
Mosquitoes are an enormous public health menace in transmitting various tropical diseases and generally as a nuisance. Many species of the genera AnophelesAedes and Culex are vectors of, e.g., malaria, yellow fever, dengue fever, hemorrhagic fever and lymphatic filariasis. Despite the use of synthetic pesticides over the past 70 years, mosquito-borne diseases are still threatening half of the world’s population. Malaria remains one of the leading causes of morbidity and mortality and kills about 660,000 people a year, mainy young children in Africa.
3.
Our Mission and What We Do | US EPA
Mission Statement of the EPA — to protect human health and to safeguard the natural environment – air, water and land – upon which life depends.
4.
Mosquito-Borne Diseases | NIOSH | CDC
Mosquito-borne diseases are those spread by the bite of an infected mosquito. Diseases that are spread to people by mosquitoes include Zika virus, West Nile virus, Chikungunya virus, dengue, and malaria.
5.
Guidance when using Mosquito Dunks
Dunks (larvicide) utilize a naturally-occurring type of bacteria to control mosquitoes before they become flying, biting, potentially disease-carrying adults.
6.
Bti for Mosquito Control | US EPA
Bti is a biological or a naturally occurring bacterium found in soils. (Bti is short for Bacillus thuringiensis subspecies israelensis.) It contains spores that produce toxins that specifically target and only affect the larvae of the mosquito, blackfly and fungus gnat. EPA has registered five different strains of Bti found in 48 pesticide products that are approved for use in residential, commercial and agricultural settings primarily for control of mosquito larvae.
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