Mosquito population down in Edmonton but could rise again due to rain

The mosquito population has already exploded this summer, but following recent rainfalls, the rest of the summer could continue to be a bit of a buzz kill.

They might be small but they come in the thousands. After a dry spring and rainy June, the mosquito population exploded in Edmonton.

While it may feel bad, the city’s mosquito traps have actually seen a decrease since the peak of 22,000 in mid-July.

“Certainly not as high as it was at the start of July but it doesn’t seem to be dropping precipitously this week anyway,” explained Sarah McPike, Senior Biological Sciences Technologist with the City of Edmonton Pest Management Lab.

The latest count shows only 4,500 mosquitos, but McPike says that number could be rising again after our recent rainfall.

“The two rain events were July 13 and July 20 and projecting a couple weeks from that is when we expect to start seeing mosquitoes come out, so that would explain the increase in mosquitoes that Edmontonians have seen in the last few days.”

The City of Edmonton opted out of their aerial pest control using biological methods instead — such as bats and dragonflies — in an effort to control the pesty insects.

Even pest control companies have mixed feelings. One company CityNews spoke to says this year has been fairly average. Meanwhile another says they’re so busy spraying mosquito control they can’t keep up with their clients.

McPike says historically, the biggest factor in mosquito population is how and when the rain falls.

“We still do have city crews out doing a targeted ditch in ground program and we know we’re eliminating a lot of the mosquito larvae that are developing in the city.”

The city is reminding Edmontonians of methods to deter mosquito populations from forming in yard such as by preventing pools of stagnant water from forming.

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