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Noticing more mosquitoes? Here's why there's an influx in Davis County

Posted at 10:00 PM, Sep 30, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-01 00:24:10-04

DAVIS CO., Utah — As a group of young boys ran around a Kaysville yard Wednesday, passing a football and screaming in the evening sun, they explained that they have noticed their outside playtime leaves a mark.

Several marks, actually.

"I was just playing outside and all of a sudden I see all these mosquitoes," one young boy said. He said he came home with 13 mosquito bites.

At the park up the street, kids and parents have noticed it too-- being attacked by the biting insects.

Chelsea Ruesch said mosquitoes left large welts on her daughter's back after only a few minutes outside.

"I feel like they've been quite a bit worse, especially in the last month or so," she said.

Ruesch is right, mosquitoes have been quite bad lately.

A larger-than-normal number of them have moved into some areas of the Wasatch Front, particularly Davis County according to the Mosquito Abatement District - Davis.

They've been out in full force lately, trying to squash the surge they say is migrating from the marshes of the Great Salt Lake.

Manager Gary Hatch indicated that warmer temperatures led to a "very good hatch," so they are seeing an excessive number of mosquitoes.

"Normally the temperatures are cool enough, where they kind of just stay out there," he said referring to how the mosquitoes normally stay put in the marshes.

"But we're about ten degrees above normal right now, and so they're moving into the neighborhoods and causing a lot of problems."

Hatch explained that they've been fielding an average of 120 calls a day of complaints and requests to spray. The mosquitoes can fly up to 25 miles, and he said they're traveling all over Davis County.

"It's a little unusual for them to be moving that far, that much," he said.

This species is a floodplain mosquito, he said, describing it as "a very nasty biter, and a very aggressive biter."

The Mosquito Abatement District - Davis has been out spraying five days a week, and Hatch said a few employees have even picked up extra shifts.

There is one good thing about this batch of pesky biters. Hatch said they don't carry West Nile Virus.

"These are not disease carrying mosquitoes," he said. "But they will leave a nasty welt."

Hatch said that people can give them a call or report an area on their website, so that the abatement workers can come and spray.

They will continue to work on calming the swarms, but Hatch described how the weather needs to cool down for the mosquitoes to completely die down.

Until that happens, Ruesch said they avoid certain activities in the evening, to avoid getting bitten. She also makes sure she's prepared.

"We've just been doing bug spray," she said. "I just have tried to have a can in the car, can in my bag, can at home. And it works, sometimes."