Maybe you’ve noticed you haven’t been swatting a lot of mosquitoes this summer.
“It’s been a strangely quiet year for nuisance mosquitoes in particular.”
Michael Kaufman is a mosquito expert and an associate professor at Michigan State University.
“Most people think all mosquitoes are a nuisance and I guess I’d have to agree with that. But the ones most people complain about come out in large numbers after rain events or spring snow melts and things like that.”
Think of nuisance mosquitoes as the kind that attack you in swarms.
Kaufman says it’s been so dry that we haven’t had the usual bursts of mosquitoes that you get after a big rain.
But he says ironically, our hot, dry summer has been ideal for the species of mosquitoes that carry West Nile virus. The species Culex pipiens is the one experts are most concerned about... and those guys like it when it’s hot.
“The Culex breed in areas that don’t necessarily need that much water. A really good source of them for their larval development is what we call catch basins or parts of storm sewer drainage systems.”
Kaufman says they also like standing water in bird baths and kiddie pools.