Could there really is an upside to all the cold weather we have been having this winter? When we’re right in the middle of these cold temperatures, it may be tough to think of what the good side is. Summer and the onset of the mosquito season is months away and seems like a distant blur in our minds. But cold winters can be an insect’s natural, lethal enemy.
In many areas of the country this year it may seem that our cold winter produced enough hard freezes to kill off billions and billions of mosquito larvae. Unfortunately though, our environment does not have the sustained temperatures needed to completely eradicate mosquitoes all together. You would have to live in inner Greenland or Antarctica for that luxury. This may not be the most practical move in order to get rid of a mosquito problem.
Mosquitoes, along with other insects, have developed a complex means of survival when it comes to the cold. From producing a natural kind of anti-freeze in their bodies, to zone-heating which keeps their vital organs warm, to methods of preventing lethal ice producing crystals from their bodies, insects are programmed to do whatever it takes for their species to survive.
With more than 200 species of mosquitoes found in the United States, it’s difficult to get away from these little blood suckers once they start to hatch in the spring. They depend on moist, warm environments to thrive. Their growth evolves through three very specific stages, starting with an egg that is laid by the female on the surface of shallow water or damp soil. Within 48 hours the larva, commonly called “wigglers”, emerge from the egg, developing into a pupa between four and 14 days. The pupae, call “tumblers,” grow, and within one and four days an adult mosquito emerges. Once this process starts it may be your best choice to spray using a qualified professional.
Not all mosquitoes can survive freezing weather so it is Nature’s way of providing a natural ‘thinning’ process. At least we can celebrate the fact that it is too cold for mosquitoes to be out. But it won’t be long before the warm weather will bring on the awakening of these pesky insects and once again, we will seek to find ways to eradicate them from our lives.