No, it’s not your imagination! Some people really are insect magnets. According to researchers, there are several factors that may contribute to the attraction. One factor is blood type. People with type O blood attract gnats, mosquitos, and other annoying insects far more than people with other blood types. So if you are one of these unlucky folks, what to do? One of the most effective approaches is applying an insect repellant to your skin and/or clothing. There are many readily available options at most stores where personal care products are sold. Incorporating some plants into your landscape that are natural insect repellants such as lemon balm, rosemary, and lavender also can help reduce the pest population around your home. While plants alone can’t make your yard pest free, they can help fend off some of the aggravators. Plus, many of these plants add wonderful aroma and color to your yard. Another important strategy is tackling the potential for standing water around your home. Take a quick walk around your yard and remove any containers or other items that could hold rainwater. For features in your yard that you cannot or don’t want to change, such as a pond or bird bath, adding mosquito dunks on a monthly basis will kill mosquito larvae. You can pick up a free mosquito dunk kit at the Birmingham Courthouse Room B-210, Bessemer Justice Center, or Center Point and Hoover satellites.