MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The recent rainfall in the metro was the perfect breeding ground for mosquitoes, just in time for the holiday weekend. There’s a short window after Sunday and Monday’s storms to treat wetlands to keep people from swatting.

The Metropolitan Mosquito Control District says June mosquito numbers were above the 10-year average as a result of the wet weather. Crews were out, beginning Wednesday, to try to offer relief for the 4th of July holiday.

Those pesky mosquitoes are a part of living in the Midwest.

“I’d say they’re the state bird of Minnesota. They swarm around you, they bite on you, itch. But they’re kind of a nuisance,” Coleman Iverson said.

They often come out at dusk.

“They’re annoying. They’re the worst part about the summers,” Tanja Brandt said.

And there’s a higher likelihood of seeing more mosquitoes after a soaking. That’s when females lay eggs and that’s when the MMCD gets to work, says field operations supervisor Ben Lubeck.

“Our job is so weather dependent that anytime it rains, we always have a lot of work to do,” Lubeck said.

Earlier in the week they were checking wetlands where larvae lives around the edge. Then they came back to treat the area. They’ll be at it all week.

“We have a small window of time to treat them with a dry granule that mosquito larvae eats while it’s in the water. They eat that product and then they don’t emerge into adult mosquitos,” Lubeck said.

The treatment should come just in time for the 4th of July. The idea is to allow people in the metro to enjoy a relatively bug-free holiday.

“I hope they can get rid of them. That would be great,” Iverson said.

Experts recommend wearing long sleeves and pants when the mosquitoes are bad, use bug spray and remove standing water in your yard.

Additionally, the MMCD has tested more than a hundred pools of mosquitoes. So far, there’s no trace of West Nile Virus.

Jennifer Mayerle

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