MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Now that the weather’s getting nice, Minnesota’s most common pest is popping out. The Metropolitan Mosquito Control District said over the Memorial Day weekend there was an explosion in the mosquito population.

Before last weekend, Mosquito Control said there were almost no mosquitoes in the area. Now, the battle to track and get rid of these pests shifts into high gear.

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You can hear the buzz — angry mosquitoes captured in one of 180 traps around the seven-county Metropolitan Mosquito Control District.

“We had a pretty significant hatch of mosquitoes right on the Memorial Day weekend,” said Mike McLean, of the Metropolitan Mosquito Control District.

One bag with about 500 mosquitoes is from Mendota Heights. At the Mosquito Control lab, the bag is put in the mosquito morgue. A little time in the deep freeze and dead mosquitoes then go under a microscope to see what kind they are.

“Minnesota has 51 kinds of mosquitoes and we don’t kill all of them,” McLean said. “There are only about 15 of them that spread disease and those are the ones we targets.”

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Mosquito Control will begin spraying in the seven-county metropolitan area in the next few days.

With all of the rain that we have had, the Metropolitan Mosquito Control District is keeping an eye on standing water in the area and they say you should, too. In those areas, you’ll see the type of mosquitoes that can breed West Nile virus.

“Those mosquitoes are a little bit different in the way they lay their eggs so they kind of seek out some of those older sites,” McLean said.

Another breeding ground for the mosquitoes that an can carry West Nile virus and Lacrosse Encephilits are old tires.

“Tires are a perfect breeding ground for a certain type of container-breeding mosquitoes and those mosquitoes are really good at spreading certain diseases,” McLean said.

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If you have any old tires, the Metropolitan Mosquito Control District will remove them from your property for free.

Esme Murphy