Where Do Mosquitoes Go in the Winter?
Mosquitoes are one of life’s nuisances that we really only think about when they’re biting us or wreaking havoc on our summer fun. Luckily, they are not a year round problem in most areas of the U.S., but their overall absence in the colder months does make you wonder…where do mosquitoes go in the winter?
First things first, mosquitoes don’t all drop dead in the winter, despite popular belief or wishful thinking. Although behavior in the colder months depends on species, generally speaking, female mosquitoes will lay eggs in very shallow pools of water (as little as a half inch) as temperatures begin to fall below 50 degrees Fahrenheit. The female will die shortly after, but the eggs will spend the winter in a state of diapause, which will suspend their development during the coldest months. When spring arrives and waters begin to thaw, the eggs will resume their normal development process and hatch.
For other mosquito species, the females will enter a state of hibernation when the cold arrives and spend the winter burrowed inside of logs or animal nests only to re-emerge in the spring and lay her eggs then. Others may spend the winter submerged in muddy swamp waters as larvae and emerge in the spring to finish their development and move onto the adult stage.
What You Can Do to Fight off Mosquitoes in the Winter
Mosquito prevention is very easy to ignore in the winter months - out of sight, out of mind, right? But you can make your spring a little less itchy by taking a few simple steps:
- Search your property for any items that can collect water. These are places where female mosquitoes may have laid eggs prior to winter such as flowerpots, buckets, birdbaths, toys, etc. Dump out the water or scrape out the ice to remove any potential eggs.
- Repair any leaky pipes, faucets or spigots around the exterior of your home to prevent pooling water.
- Unclog gutters and remove debris piles, which can serve as shelter for hibernating female mosquitoes.
- If you live in an area where temperatures do not stay consistently below 50 degrees Fahrenheit in the winter, follow the same mosquito prevention techniques as you would in the summer, i.e. wearing long sleeves and pants, using bug repellant spray, etc.
Professional pest control services like Pestmaster can help rid your property of mosquitoes and offer consultation on the best way to prevent them throughout the winter. Contact us today to speak to one of our integrated pest management experts.