It has been a hot and dry spring, which means the Edmonton area hasn’t experienced much in the way of mosquitoes yet this year.
Mike Jenkins, biological science technician with the city, says the recent wet weather could change that.
“We are seeing hatching in the areas where the water is filling up and flooding those things and activating the dormant eggs,” explains Jenkins. “Our crews have been out there treating the areas where the mosquito larvae are developing to try to reduce the numbers of larvae.”
He says Edmonton has been lucky so far in 2016.
“Plants are so thirsty that a lot of those habitats dried up before mosquitoes even completed their lifecycle,” explains Jenkins. “The overall numbers are not as high as we’ve seen in previous springs with the same level of rainfall but there definitely is some developing out there.”
Jenkins says the chance of rain in the forecast could cause some water to pool but right now, the situation is good.
“So far this spring has been remarkably low,” explains Jenkins. “We had some hatching after the spring snow melt in April but since then we haven’t had any sort of input in terms of moisture. This is pretty much the first hatch that we’ve gotten.”
He says they keep checking the traps and so far, things look good.
“Those light trap numbers are extremely low at the moment,” explains Jenkins. “Just handfuls of mosquitoes and it is still the early spring species.”
Jenkins says many are concerned about the Zika virus right now, as it is transferred by mosquitoes, but says Edmontonians should not be worried. He says mosquitoes that can carry that virus cannot live in climates higher than the central US. (twd)