Pest Control Blog

Does a long winter reduce mosquito numbers

May 8th, 2018 by Mike MacDonald in Minnesota, Mosquito, Pest Control Services

With many parts of the country getting hit with a late April snow storm, we have been getting the question of, “does a long winter reduce mosquito numbers?” In this post we answer the question of “does a long winter help for getting rid of mosquitoes in your yard?”

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Is length of mosquito season a factor for how many mosquitoes there are?

Depending on where you live, the starting time of mosquito season can range from early February to early may. The biggest factor is temperature for when mosquitoes will start to become active.

Most mosquitoes will either die off, or go into hibernation in the winter months, and many simply lay eggs in water that freezes through the winter, which preserves the eggs.

This means that as soon as temperatures approach the 50 degree range, these eggs can start to thaw and begin hatching.

So with a later winter storm or longer winter, it can push the overall mosquito season back later into the year, but does this make a huge difference or just squish the normal numbers into a smaller window?

Unfortunately how long the mosquito season is isn’t the only thing that determines how bad a mosquito season you will have. It also isn’t typically the most important factor either.

Moisture levels makes for larger mosquito numbers

As we mentioned earlier, mosquitoes can hibernate or have their eggs survive frozen throughout the winter, so having a longer winter doesn’t really effect their numbers much. It really just pushes the season back a bit, but doesn’t mean that numbers change much when temperatures do start to come out.

In some cases, a longer winter with more snow can actually increase mosquito numbers, rather than reducing populations. The biggest aspect that a late winter and heavy snows impact is it creates more standing water for mosquitoes to breed.

If your winter was anything like it was in the northern states this year, you may have experienced a few feet of snow one week and the next had temperatures in the mid 60’s. This created massive amounts of melted snow very quickly and many opportunities for standing water.

Mosquitoes lay their eggs in standing water, and the more standing water there is, the more opportunities there are for mosquitoes to breed. So even with a longer winter pushing mosquito season back, it can actually do more harm than good.

When should you treat for getting rid of mosquitoes?

Another common question we get at Rove Pest Control is, “What time of year should you treat for mosquitoes?” What we have found is that the earlier you treat post snow, the better the results.

Certainly there isn’t really a time that’s too late to treat, unless it’s already winter. Whenever you treat, it can either be more beneficial for the current season or for next season.

If you are looking to reduce mosquito activity for the current mosquito season, we really recommend starting treatment in early spring. While you might not really be experiencing much mosquito activity this early in the year, it doesn’t mean that it’s a bad time to treat for them.

The earlier in the season you treat for mosquitoes after the thaw has happened the better. The biggest cause of pest issues overall is that pests are simply left unchecked and allowed to breed and flourish.

By setting up a mosquito treatment with a pest control service like us at Rove Pest Control, you are going to be able to reduce their numbers before they become a problem. With a year like this one, it becomes increasingly important to treat early with all the excess water sources left behind from the later than normal snow fall.

The longer you wait to treat for mosquitoes, the more numbers they will be able to build up. This certainly doesn’t mean that treating later in the season is a bad thing, but you’ll certainly see a larger decrease later in the season if you start treating now.

Treating for mosquitoes right before the season ends is another great time to treat for mosquitoes because you are able to take out many of the stragglers that are planning to lay eggs that can survive over the colder winter months. By eliminating mosquitoes late in the season, you can reduce next year’s mosquito populations as well.

If you have active pest issues like mosquitoes, or if you would like to get a head start to eliminate potential issues to come, be sure to reach out to us at Rove Pest Control to set up your first mosquito treatment of the season.

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