Pest Prediction: How Prevalent Will Mosquitoes, Ticks Be In 2014?

Updated: 02/13/2014 7:47 AM
Created: 02/12/2014 4:14 PM
By: Josh Rosenthal

The weather is a little warmer this week. You can almost feel Spring and Summer right around the corner. So with that in mind, what better time to talk about mosquitoes.

"It's always a good time of the year to talk about mosquitoes," smiled Mike McLean. He's the spokesperson for the Metropolitan Mosquito Control District, which sprays for both mosquitoes and ticks all over the metro. They gave us an advance copy of their annual report, which is scheduled to be formally released Thursday.

"It's a real thorough examination of the program from a technical point of view," explained McLean.

Here's one takeaway from the report: 2013 was unusual. We got snow late so mosquitoes hatched late, leading to an intense year for the insect but only for a short period of time.

As for ticks, late snow meant we had fewer than usual. Turns out, that could be a good sign for 2014.

"Since they have a two year life cycle," said McLean of the ticks, "that depression in their numbers will carry over into this year, we're thinking."

Of course, like so many things in Minnesota, that statement depends on the weather.

"Every year we have to plan for a normal year. But the problem is, no year is ever normal," McLean laughed.

And one more thing: while the long winter last year might help us with ticks, McLean doesn't think it'll help drive down the number of mosquitoes.

"Mosquitoes do just fine here no matter what," he said.

So just like with Minnesotans, cold weather won't slow a mosquito down.

Minneapolis/St. Paul

36° | 26°
  • Feels like: 32° F
  • Wind: 0mph
  • Humidity: 73%
  • Wed Considerable cloudiness
    42° | 28°
  • Thu Morning clouds followed by afternoon sun
    30° | 15°
  • Fri Sunshine
    24° | 10°
  • Sat Partly cloudy
    18° | 2°