MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – With the snow, ice, and cold still lingering, there is one sign that spring is right around the corner.

The Metropolitan Mosquito Control District is treating more than 100 acres in the metro this week because of thin ice conditions.

“The ice will melt eventually, so we’re going to have some real warm weather, and with the warm weather will come mosquitoes,” the mosquito district’s spokesperson, Mike McLean, said.

More than 300 time-release briquettes will be used on one pond in Golden Valley. The chemicals in the briquettes only start working when underwater, but they aren’t affected by the snow.

“It will treat the mosquitoes for 150 days,” Lucas Griemann, the MMCD’s Field Operations Supervisor, said.

Most mosquitoes hatch in the spring, but crews are treating for a particular species called “cattail mosquitoes.”

That type of mosquito will hatch in the fall and actually survive the winter.

“These mosquitoes emerge as adults around the Fourth of July and spoil everybody’s picnic, so we really try to get a handle on them early,” McLean said.

So while mosquitoes may not be your idea of a good summer, at least they may remind you that the season isn’t so far away.

The Metropolitan Mosquito Control District is treating for these cattail mosquitoes at any pond or marsh that has, you guessed it, cattails.

They will then use helicopter treatments or pellets in the spring and summer to control the majority of other mosquitoes that hatch around Memorial Day.

The chemicals in the water only affect organisms with non-acidic digestive systems, like gnats and mosquitoes. Birds and fish are all okay.

Kate Raddatz

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