ST. LOUIS (KMOX)- You might think one of the few benefits of this long stretch of hot, dry weather would be fewer mosquitoes…
Well, you’d be wrong.
Take it from a man who knows — University of Illinois extension entomologist Phil Nixon.
He says the pests and the diseases they carry can actually be worse during a drought.
“Northern house mosquito actually lay fewer eggs when it rains than if it was hot and dry,” he says. “The hot temperature allows them to reproduce quicker.”
He says once a substantial amount of rain does fall, mosquitoes won’t waste much time finding pools of water to lay their eggs.
“All it takes is the right range, at anytime, a couple of inches, just enough to have some standing water around. And about 14 days later, we will have mosquitoes bothering us big time,” Nixon says.
He adds you may not even know you’re under attack because they’re stealth biters, long gone before you notice you’re being bitten.
But he says the species really packs a wallop when it comes to potentially transmitting West Nile Virus or St. Louis encephalitis.