MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — It’s officially mosquito season in Minnesota, as crews are out in full force trying to contain the bug.

The Metropolitan Mosquito Control District (MMCD) is a public agency whose mission is, in part, to make public spaces as mosquito-free as possible.

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Public entities can call them to arrange for treatment for their public events.

The use a number of methods to contain mosquitos, including larval control, spraying and fogging.

MMCD has been conducting its larval control — or the killing of the mosquito larvae while still in the water with pellets — for the past month.

Its crews recently started daytime backpack spraying across the metro and generally wait to fog in the evenings later in the summer.

(credit: CBS)

MMCD does not use aircraft to spray or fog in the metro area.

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The spraying is conducted in areas specified 24 hours in advance. MMCD chooses those areas from the results of traps set each Monday night to find problem areas.They also rely on callers to tell them about spots with lots of mosquitos.

The spray is a permethrin that not only kills mosquitos, but acts as a barrier to prevent the insects from leaving wooded areas and entering into open spaces. It generally lasts for seven to 10 days.

Fogging is conducted in the evening in areas of intense mosquito activity. Trucks will spread a fine fog that sticks to the mosquitos’ wings and kills them on impact.

“It isn’t a permanent solution,” said Mike McLean with the MMCD. “The larval control is the way to go if you want to knock those numbers down.”

The MMCD does not spray for ticks and flies. McLean says ticks are very difficult to kill and flies are treated before they mature in the rivers and streams.

The MMCD does not treat private properties and conducts an environmental assessment before spraying or fogging any area.

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To reach the MMCD, you can call 651-645-9149 or click here.

Heather Brown