Different Types of Mosquitos after Hurricane

Question: Are we seeing different types of mosquitos after Hurricane Matthew?

Answer: The number of mosquito species in North America number in the thousands, and each one have a different habitat that they require for reproduction. The mosquitos that we’re seeing after the tropical storm/hurricane event are primarily salt marsh mosquitos or tree-hole mosquitos. So the tree hole mosquitos, the eggs are laid in voided areas inside trees, puddle areas, low-lying areas that generally don’t have water in them, and those eggs can lay dormant for quite some time. So after a hurricane event, you get all this water that fills up these basins that generally don’t stay full, which is why you see this big surge of mosquitos all at one time. Those are eggs that have been laying dormant for quite some time.

The salt marsh mosquitos are coming where, just like where it sounds—from the saltwater marsh areas. The saltwater marsh areas, under normal tidal influence, only create minimal pooling areas, which is where the salt marsh mosquito needs for reproduction. In a hurricane or tropical storm event, you get that surge of water that now has areas in salt marsh holding pools of water that it’s not held before. So that increases the habitat that mosquitos have for reproduction, and that’s why you see a surge of salt marsh mosquitoes after an event like this.

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