474 (9/9/09)

     Despite the holiday weekend, as well as the sudden and incredible mosquito hatch, 19 kids joined us Saturday morning for more work and fun.  I was far away with a paddle in my hand, but Sheri DeMars, Rhonda Fangmeier, and Sandy Wall gave up their Saturday morning to keeps things running smoothly.  Thanks!

     But, how about those mosquitoes?  Here are some interesting mosquito facts: 

  • There are over 2500 different species throughout the world--150 species just in the United States.    
  • Female mosquitoes need a meal of blood to develop viable eggs.  They lay them on the surface of standing water, or above the water line near standing or running water. 
  • The eggs must hatch in water.  A lot of rain means a lot of standing water.  It also means eggs laid above the water line may become submerged, and can now hatch. 
  • Egg to adulthood takes approximately four to seven days, and the average brood produces 200 new mosquitoes--ready to mate shortly after taking flight.  With ideal conditions, a single female mosquito can begin a cycle that produces over 20 million new mosquitoes in under two months.
  • Female mosquitoes can see you, or other blood hosts, from about 30 feet away, but can sense the carbon dioxide in your breath from about 100 feet away if they are downwind.  Males live for six or seven days, females from two to ten weeks.
  • The most effective control method is the removal of breeding sites (standing water).  Mosquito repellants with DEET are still the most effective as a final defense.

     Living with mosquitoes is a part of the Minnesota experience, like many other challenging aspects of life in the “North Star” state.  And, just as with those other enjoyable things, if we really think we need to live here, we can put up with them!  And we love living here.

     We will hope for less buzzing by next Saturday as we head to the five mile bridge for our 12th annual Fall Fishing Day.  Michelle Kelly, from the Minnesota DNR award-winning MinnAqua program, will join us for the third consecutive year, teaching us about fish and fishing, and directing a fun morning of catch and release where the Crow River enters beautiful Lake Koronis.

     We meet at the Nature Park at 9:00 a.m. as usual for Michelle’s program, then board a bus for the lake.  We’ll be back for our normal 11:30 a.m. lunch, finishing up by noon.

     The following Saturday, September 19, is our annual river clean-up day.  Watch for details next week.