Mosquito Warfare, Lets Kill Em All

Or at least repel them…

ThermaCELL Mosquito Repellent Lantern
ThermaCELL Mosquito Repellent Lantern
Glen Wunderlich
Glen Wunderlich

Lansing, Michigan – -(  If you have that outdoor bug – a hankering for fresh air and sunshine – there’s one ready to have you, too: the mosquito.

Here are a few options to keep them from biting and bugging you.

Years ago, the rage was bug zappers. They did a fine job killing flying insects at night, but the trouble was that only about 2 percent of them were mosquitoes. Turns out that mosquitoes are not attracted to light.

Then came the Mosquito Magnet powered by a 20-pound propane cylinder that produces carbon dioxide and a secondary attractant and sucks the buggers into a trap. It’s effective and expensive costing from $400 to over $1,000 and is as portable as a boat anchor. Anyway, rumor has it that they’ll be outlawed soon by the government as a contributor to global warming, climate change or for causing mosquitoes to be doomed to endangered species status…?

Popular choices are lotions and sprays containing DEET. Just how safe this stuff is on our skin remains questionable at best, however. Do you really trust a concoction of chemicals that will literally melt plastics and painted surfaces? Yuk!

A safer alternative for the skin is Natrapel, which contains no DEET, but frankly it doesn’t last as long as DEET and is not recommended for clothing.

Spending time on the patio or in the garage, where the wind can’t blow the bugs off course, I’ve relied on a totally effective, inexpensive appliance called ThermaCELL ( ) . It’s used as a mosquito repeller in your backyard or away from home and creates a 15 x 15-foot zone of protection.

  • Repels mosquitoes, black flies, no-see-ums and other flying insects
  • Registered with the EPA
  • No open flames or hot wax; safe to use
  • Comfortable: No smelly lotions, sprays, or oils
  • Convenient: Compact, portable, and easy to carry

ThermaCELL Mosquito Repellent lanterns ( ) and appliances are powered by a single butane cartridge, which provides the cordless, portable heat that activates the patented devices.

The heat generated by the butane cartridge is directed to a metal grill that is part of the design of the lantern or appliance. A small mat, saturated with repellent, sits on top of the metal grill. Heat vaporizes the repellent, allowing it to rise into the air.

The repellent is allethrin, a copy of a repellent that naturally occurs in chrysanthemum flowers. It repels mosquitoes, black flies, and no-see-ums, and will not harm humans or pets.

Within minutes after turning on the Lantern or Appliance, the repellent creates a 15 by 15-foot (225 square-foot) area of repellency, the size of an average deck, patio, or campsite. All ThermaCELL Mosquito Repellent products use the same refills, which contain both repellent mats and butane cartridges.

These ingenious devices are not gimmicks, either. A week ago, I was hoping to do some wildlife photography and erected a roomy, portable blind hours before. When I arrived at my hideout, it was filled with thousands of mosquitoes. I clicked on the ThermaCELL and began chasing the annoying pests out the open windows and within a few minutes, not only were all of them gone, but they weren’t even clinging onto the window screens.

If you have to come up with a gift for mom or dad, you may want to consider one of the ThermaCELL units – and plenty of refills. It beats bugs and just about anything out there.

About Glen WunderlichCharter Member Professional Outdoor Media Association (POMA). Outdoor writer and columnist for The Argus-Press ( and blog site at  Member National Rifle Association (NRA), Michigan United Conservation Clubs (MUCC), member U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance (USSA), Quality Deer Management Association (QDMA), Commemorative Bucks of Michigan (CBM). Adjutant of Perry, Michigan Sons of Amvets Post 4064 and Chairman Perry (MI) Youth Hunt Extravaganza, a sanctioned event of Perry Sons of Amvets held the third weekend of September each year.

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7 years ago

Now we have this mosquito disease showing up in several states.
Terrible body aches and fever.

chikungunya mosquito disease
Yes, it is real, no joke and no thanks!

7 years ago

I can’t stand being bitten I itch or weeks. Been working on this for several years. 05/05/2014 (CNN) — When is bug spray more than just bug spray? When it’s a compound that, according to researcher’s at Vanderbilt University, is thousands of times stronger than DEET, works on many different insects and could very well save lives. Scientists at the school say they’ve developed just such a repellent. Known merely as VUAA1 for now, they say it works not just on mosquitoes, but also ants, flies, moths and a host of other bugs that, at best, are a nuisance and, at… Read more »