Spring weather's late arrival won't hurt the mosquitoes

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After slogging through one last week of winter weather, much of Minnesota will enjoy a taste of instant spring this weekend. Soon people will be slipping on shorts, sipping cool drinks in the backyard and leaving blankets behind when they head to Target Field.

And they will be swatting bugs.

The extended winter will not reduce the state's population of mosquitoes, ticks and blackflies, the Duluth News Tribune reports.

The Metropolitan Mosquito Control District on its Facebook page was warning people to be on the lookout for deer ticks last week.

“I don’t think the late season and snow cover is going to kill any of them,” retired teacher and area naturalist Larry Weber told the News Tribune. “I think they will all make it; it’s just that they will be coming a little bit later.”

It might have harmed the pests if the weather had really warmed up and gotten the insects moving – and then gotten very cold again. But it never really turned warm enough for that, experts say.

Mosquitoes will simply start showing up a little later than usual, MPR reported. Last year's early spring invited mosquitoes out by mid- to late May, Jim Stark, who directs the Metropolitan Mosquito Control District, told MPR. This year, they will be along soon enough, depending on how much rain the state gets after it warms up, he said.

The story is the similar for forest pests like army worms, the News Tribune reported.

“Most of the stuff we have is pretty well adapted” to winter, said Mike Albers, a forest health specialist with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources’ Division of Forestry.

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