MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Mosquitoes: there are millions of them, they’re a nuisance, and so is their bite which makes you itch and scratch your skin like crazy. So why does the mosquito population in Minnesota seem to be pretty slim this year?

Jim Stark, the Executive Director of the Metropolitan Mosquito Control District said part of the reason is because of cooler weather.

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“It slowed it down. Mosquitoes develop in water, and the cooler the water temperature, the longer it takes mosquitoes to develop,” he said.

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According to Stark, the slow spring gave his agency a better opportunity to treat the 70,000 wetlands around the metro to help control the mature mosquitoes.

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How will the possible government shutdown affect the Mosquito Control District?

“We are not funded by the state, we are funded by the county. What happens is we have dedicated real estate tax that residents around the metro area pay,” he explained, “The only way we’ll be impacted is from some of the other state agencies that might be able to provide some of the services that we get from them.”

With all the heavy rains that the Twin Cities has received this year, Stark said they’ve had a lot of mosquito production.

“We’ve treated about 150,000 acres so far this year to keep mosquitoes from developing. This is Minnesota. We’re going to notice a few more adult mosquitoes out as it warms up here.”

Stark said that many people come out around dusk when mosquitoes are most active, so he suggested taking a few precautions.

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“Wear light, long, loose clothing and use a good repellant,” he said.