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Being bitten? Observers say Lower Mainland abuzz with more mosquitoes this year

Click to play video: 'Metro Vancouver buzzing with mosquito complaints' Metro Vancouver buzzing with mosquito complaints
After June came and went without many mosquitoes, July has people around Metro Vancouver bugging out. It's directly related to the damp spring we had, but some areas are seeing it worse than others. Jasmine Bala has more from Fort Langley, one of the region's mosquito hot spots – Jul 12, 2022

Heavier and more prolonged rainfall has brought more mosquitoes to the Lower Mainland than last year, two mosquito observers have told Global News.

Ryan Wood of the pest control company Orkin Canada and Shaun Calver of Morrow BioScience Ltd. say both their mosquito control programs are buzzing this summer.

“Last year was fairly light with the amount of heat we got and how everything was dry,” Wood explained.

“With the amount of rain, subsequent puddles and marshes — even just the amount of moisture in your backyard — it’s been ideal breeding grounds for mosquitoes this year.”

Read more: If you smack a mosquito, slap it in an envelope for this B.C. entomologist

Morrow BioScience Ltd., an environmental monitoring service provider, operates a mosquito hotline for residents of Coquitlam, Langley, Surrey, Maple Ridge, Pitt Meadows and Richmond. The line have been especially busy this year, said Calver.

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“The hot spots are Fort Langley, Walnut Grove and Maple Ridge,” he told Global News. “It’s directly related to the higher-than-normal Fraser River.”

High streamflow this season has meant a greater concentration of mosquitoes and mosquito eggs every time Morrow BioScience Ltd. treats the area by hand or by helicopter. There have been three river peaks this year, leading to three separate mosquito hatches, said Calver.

Click to play video: 'UBC researcher wants your dead mosquitos in the mail' UBC researcher wants your dead mosquitos in the mail
UBC researcher wants your dead mosquitos in the mail – Jun 16, 2022

To protect oneself from being bitten, Calver recommended bug spray with DEET and wearing light clothing. Wood also recommended Thermacells, and a range of preventative options to avoid attracting mosquitoes to the home.

“With how wet it’s been, a lot of people haven’t been able to mow their lawns as often, so you get tall grasses, you get out of control weeds — perfect harvest area for mosquitoes,” he said. “Cool, moist, down by the grass where the sun can’t get at them.”

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Trim lawns, pull out weeds and eliminate any pools in the backyard, including saucers of water in potted plants or at the bottom of bird feeders, he suggested.

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