This article was published originally on 6/14/2013
Below is the summary of mosquito activity in Iowa from the ISU Medical Entomology Laboratory. Mosquito surveillance in Iowa has been ongoing since 1969. During the summer months, the Iowa State University Medical Entomology Laboratory, in cooperation with the Iowa Department of Public Health and the University of Iowa Hygienic Lab, monitors mosquito populations and mosquito-borne diseases in Iowa.
The Iowa mosquito collection data for the year are available online at the Iowa Mosquito Surveillance website. The statewide average mosquito counts by week (including a comparison to last year's mosquito activity) are shown.
Summary for the week of June 17, 2013
Mosquitoes are not out at extreme levels, yet. But they are thick. Mosquito survey personnel in central Iowa report that it has been rare to find a day or night in the past week when mosquitoes did not visit for a blood meal. By far the most common mosquitoes on the wing are Aedes species, known as floodwater mosquitoes. These, unfortunately for us, are the ones that most love to feed on humans.
Trap data indicate the current trap counts are, on average, greater than for any week of 2012. See chart below.
Last year's activity was extremely low, so this annual comparison doesn't state much by itself. However, you can be sure that the rainwater and warm temperatures have persisted long enough for the mosquitoes to develop, emerge, and now thrive.
In times like these, it's important to remember that insect repellents with DEET are effective at warding off adult mosquitoes. It's just as important to remember source reduction, which means eliminating sources of standing water, where immature mosquitoes develop. Such sources include bird baths, wheel barrows, tires, buckets, etc.
The season for West Nile activity has not yet started, but we will inform you of surveillance results as the summer proceeds.
Mosquito trap catch data from the ISU Medical Entomology Laboratory, June 21, 2013.