‘There’s about to be blood’: Mosquito season returns to the DC area

For most people, summer can be one of their least favorite seasons. With the warm weather comes bugs, and this mosquito season is back and about to get longer in the D.C. region.

The region is ranked among the top spots for mosquitoes in the nation. According to Orkin, it’s No. 6 for mosquitoes, while last year it was No. 4.

In 2023, Los Angeles, Chicago, New York, Atlanta, Dallas and Fort Worth, Texas, are the only cities where Orkin performed more mosquito control services.

“We’ve got mosquitoes here. The weather is perfect this time of year for mosquitoes and there’s about to be blood,” said Mike “The Bug Guy” Raupp, professor emeritus and extension specialist at the University of Maryland College Park.

Raupp said there are a few things that lead to a busy biting season around here. Among them is warm weather and rain, which the D.C. region has plenty of as the summer season approaches.

Open containers, such as trash cans and buckets with water in them, are perfect for mosquitoes to lay their eggs in, and with a heavily populated area, “there is lots of blood,” Raupp said.

Raupp said the most concerning mosquito is the northern house mosquito, which can carry the West Nile virus. He said while cases do pop up in the region, the good news is the illness is not as common around here.

“The good news here is the DMV is not really the hot spot for West Nile virus. That tends to be further out West in places like Colorado and California,” Raupp said.

Raupp said the bug lays egg rafts in any standing water and those egg rafts lead to 150 mosquitoes a piece.

He recommends everyone look around their homes for any standing water — whether it be water that has collected in a garbage pail, wheelbarrow or even a flying disc laying in the yard — and emptying it out.

“This will reduce the sites where mosquitoes can breed in your yard,” Raupp said.

If you are going outside, wear light-colored and lightweight, loosefitting clothing, which helps to prevent bites. Also, use mosquito repellents, such as oil of lemon eucalyptus or products with DEET.

Mike Murillo

Mike Murillo is a reporter and anchor at WTOP. Before joining WTOP in 2013, he worked in radio in Orlando, New York City and Philadelphia.

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