Increased Mosquito Populations

                                                                 (mosquito laying eggs in water. Photo: US EPA)
 
All across Canada and the US we are seeing historic rainfalls, which sometimes, tragically, leads to flooding. These increased rainfalls signal a huge boon for one species though: mosquitoes! 
 
Entomologists are warning that mosquito populations could be 2-3 times their normal levels, in some areas, because of increased rainfall and standing water. 
 
Mosquitoes’ eggs need water to hatch. When mosquitoes lay their eggs in places that dry out before hatching, these eggs do not die, but go dormant awaiting the opportune time. When these dormant eggs hatch and combine with the increased hatching rates of a wet season we see population booms. 
 
Increased mosquito populations don’t just mean camping will be more pesky. Urban centres like Toronto and Montreal are predicting that it will affect them as well. 
 
I live in a small city of 125000 near Toronto: not a place that I would normally don my bug shirt to garden in my backyard. However, yesterday I did just that. Regular populations of mosquitoes in the city don’t generally bother me as I was raised in Northern Ontario and I know what bad bug seasons are like. 
 
This year, though, I got several bug bites in the first few minutes of gardening. I headed back inside, put on my bug shirt and finished my urban gardening in peace, preventing the booming mosquito populations from feasting on my blood yet again. 
 
I am not looking forward to the increase in mosquitoes, especially living between two rivers that run through my city. I know, however, that I will be able to enjoy my backyard in peace with my bug shirt. 

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