As Seen On Boston Fox25
People are “bugging out” in Massachusetts over the mosquito population. It’s no coincidence it feels like there are more mosquitoes this year.
“We’re getting a lot of calls from first-time homeowners who’ve never had to have their property treated,” said Kathy Smargedlis of Mosquito Joe Pest Control.
The rainy spring has caused an explosion in some areas of the state of so-called “floodwater” species of mosquitoes.
In central Massachusetts, for example, the number of a.vexans mosquitoes, a species which thrives when rainfall is abundant, is up 600 percent over last year.
Across the state, agencies charged with monitoring mosquito populations have been collecting data in recent weeks on the number and type of mosquitoes they’re seeing.
And if you are not fond of slapping mosquitoes away, the news, short-term, is not good.
“We are seeing greater numbers than we have over the past couple of years. Because we are out of that drought that we had,” said Kaitlyn O’Donnell of Norfolk County Mosquito Control District.
O’Donnell, an entomologist, says despite the sharp rise in mosquito numbers, it’s too early to draw conclusions on how the rest of the season might go.
“So, it seems like some things are a little bit delayed. Other things have been a little bit early. So, it is very weather dependent,” said O’Donnell.
And when it comes to mosquitoes, it is all about the water, or lack of it.
The drought is long over with, but in some areas of the state, it is having a lingering effect on the mosquito population and that’s not a bad thing.
Low-water levels in swamps and other permanent bodies of water last summer could mean fewer of a type of mosquito that transmits West Nile Virus and Triple E.
In central Massachusetts, the population of c. Perturbans jumped more than 800 percent last week, but the number is still below last year. But for the moment, mosquito control companies are enjoying a boom.
“I had a stay at home dad call me from Medfield… Even during the daytime in the shade, they can’t be out because his kids are getting chewed up,” said Samargedlis.