This week, our thoughts and prayers are with those that have been affected by Hurricane Sandy.
With the amount of rain that the storm dropped on a large part of the country, we have been receiving questions regarding hurricanes and if they can result in more mosquitoes. In general, more water means more mosquitoes, but November’s normal temperatures aren’t conducive to mosquito reproduction. While there are some areas that may be somewhat impacted, Sandy shouldn’t result in an influx of mosquitoes in the Northeast.
Temperature plays a big factor in mosquito reproduction. While mosquitoes can breed in cooler temperatures, their magic weather forecast is 80 degrees with 80% humidity. Fewer will breed when it is cooler outside, and when the temperatures are 60% or less for an extended period of time, mosquitoes don’t typically breed.
Much like they force me to sit in front of the fire with a cup of hot cocoa, freezing temperatures result in fewer mosquitoes.
Right now, some mosquitoes may lay eggs in the flooded areas of the country, and just because the water may leave, doesn’t mean the eggs will. Mosquito eggs are resilient. While eggs that are laid in water may hatch in a few days, eggs can lay dormant for years in soil or if frozen. When the temperatures rise again and the soil is flooded, those eggs will hatch just as those laid in the summer do.
While we don’t believe Hurricane Sandy will result in a spike of mosquitoes next year, it doesn’t hurt to get rid of the standing water on your property if you can. Tip or Turnover items that may be holding water like birdbaths, dog dishes, etc., toss out lawn debris like leaves that can hold keep a small amount or water, and tighten tarps so they don’t pool.
If you have any issues with an increase of mosquitoes, contact your local Mosquito Squad for an effective mosquito control treatment.