thuricide in rain barrels

I use several rain barrels to have water for my plants and garden that doesn't have the clorine, etc. added to tap water supplies.
To avoid supplying mosquittoes a birthing place I add a few drops of Black Leaf Thurcide microbial insecticide now and again. This is felt safe to apply to grape and vegatable growths.
Is there a more suitable protector to use?
Ciao, Ack.
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Use a screen over your barrels. You only have to install it once.
Thuricide is a form of Bacillus Thuringensis (BT), which targets the larvae of lepidoptera (caterpillars). There is a form of BT which is used against diptera, but is is not the one that is generally sold in hardware stores unless you see mosquitoes specifically on the label. If you use the other stuff it has no effect on the mosquitoes. Using a screen to deny mosquito access to the barrel will keep the adults from laying eggs there.
The mosquito larvae can't live in pure water: they need some organic material in the water to live on. If you keep the rain barrels clean, that will help. This means you have to prevent the growth of algae in the barrels. Bleach works great for that, but since you want water without chlorine in it it's not the solution for you. You might try hydrogen peroxide for that purpose, although it would probably take a quart of the stuff from the grocery store to kill the algae (I've never tried this so I don't know if it really kills algae at moderate concentrations). However you would probably have to add a quart every couple of weeks, at around $1/qt, so this appears to be an economically unsound solution.
The algae won't grow if it doesn't get light, so using opaque barrels with lids will also help. The lid will help keep out the mosquitoes also.
The screen seems the cheapest way to me.
Chlorine in water will evaporate with time. If you take a bucket of tap water and set it outside the chlorine will disappear into the air. This might take a week.
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There is a form of BT called BTi that targets mosquitos. It is a slightly different strain than thuricide or dipel. You could just put a tablespoon or two of kerosene on the surface or even a thin layer of cooking oil.
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you could buy a couple live minnows at the bait store. they will keep the barrel clean but you have to leave a bit of water in there at all times.
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