Mosquitoes in my pond

Asked April 11, 2015, 1:33 PM EDT

I have a small pond on my property, about 10' x 5'. It is inhabited by salamanders and frogs. It also has mosquitoes which are a nuisance. Deer may drink the water and we have horses on the property. What can I put in the water to eliminate the mosquitoes that is not a detriment to the environment? Any kind of fish? Thanks for your help. Patricia Collins

Linn County Oregon

1 Response

Hello Patricia:

I would recommend stocking some species of native local fish. The pond is too small and will probably too warm in the summer for rainbow trout to survive in it. Hence, I would recommend local native species of fish such as red-side shiners or sticklebacks . I am not sure where you can get them from and I will ask colleagues in the Oregon Dept. of Fish and Wildlife for guidance on this and will get back to you. Could you write to me again in one week? Use my e-mail address to make sure you reach me:
One thing I would recommend, if you are really keen in protecting the integrity of our streams and the environment in general, is to avoid releasing non-native species. Sooner or later (through some unusual flood event) they get out of the pond and end up in the local waterways. Even the so called "mosquito fish" (which is gambusia) can be a problem and they don't eat more mosquitoes than any of our local minnows. So they are not particularly a great tool and they can spread like weeds in the surrounding streams and ponds.

I will come up with a more complete list of species and some options for you to get these fish in a week time. Please send me an e-mail by then and I will reply directly.

Dr. Guillermo Giannico
Extension Fisheries Specialist
Department of Fisheries and Wildlife
Oregon State University