Florida’s mosquito population has boomed thanks to recent heavy rains. This could mean a rise in certain illnesses.
When Florida experienced much less rain than normal in the spring, mosquitoes were laying drought-resistant eggs. Now that Florida has entered its rainy season, those eggs are hatching. University of Florida entomology professor Jonathan Day said that this could mean more cases of certain mosquito-borne viruses, such as the dengue virus. Day said the mosquito that carries dengue lays its eggs near human households.
“This is a mosquito that lives in containers, like little abandoned swimming pools, the little small kiddie pools, flower pots,” said Day.
Day said there have been some reported cases of dengue in Martin and Saint Lucie Counties. He said instances of other mosquito-borne illnesses, including West Nile virus and Saint Louis encephalitis, don’t increase with the mosquito population.