It’s been a bad year for mosquitoes in the Fraser Valley. (Black Press Media files)

It’s been a bad year for mosquitoes in the Fraser Valley. (Black Press Media files)

‘Perfect storm’ led to bad year for mosquitos near Fraser River

High river levels and lots of rain meant many eggs hatched this year

If you want to become an involuntary blood donor this year, go for a walk near the Fraser River, and the mosquitoes will gladly oblige.

It’s one of the worst summers for mosquitoes in years, and multiple episodes of high water on the river is being blamed, having left behind pools and puddles that are prime breeding ground for the insects.

“The mosquitoes are bad in Fort Langley with the extended high water,” said Cheryl MacIntosh, commodore of the Fort Langley Canoe Club.

Although the club has shut down its group activities due to the coronavirus pandemic, individual members are still paddling about alone or in family groups. But getting into the water isn’t that much fun right now, MacIntosh said.

“Preparing the boat, loading and unloading by the water are the difficult times,” she said. “Once on the water and moving they are not as bad, as long as you keep moving.”

Morrow BioScience is running the nuisance mosquito program for Metro Vancouver again this year.

“It’s not been a particularly good year for mosquitoes,” said Shaun Calver, Morrow’s operations manager.

In fact, a combination of a rather damp July and multiple high-water events on the Fraser River have resulted in what he called a “perfect storm” for mosquitoes.

Each rainfall, and especially the high water levels, created conditions for more mosquito eggs to hatch, and more larvae to become blood-sucking adults.

However, the end is near.

“It is tapering off,” Calver said.

The mosquitoes live several weeks in their adult form, depending on the temperature.

“The hotter the weather, the quicker they die off,” he said.

Morrow BioScience applies bacterial larvicide to water bodies to try to cut down on the numbers of the biting insects, as well as monitoring larva levels and conducting public education on mosquito prevention.

The company is finished with its larvae control efforts for the year, barring another unlikely rise in river levels, Calver said.

Local municipalities and Metro Vancouver have long advocated for people to help control mosquitoes by removing unnecessary standing water on their properties, particularly items like old tires, blocked gutters, bird baths, or buckets that can hold stagnant rainwater.

Mosquitoes are most active between dusk and dawn, and are attracted to dark and intense colours. To avoid them, try to wear light coloured clothing, wear long-sleeved shirts and pants, and tightly-woven materials. Mesh “bug jackets” or “bug hats” may be needed during extreme conditions.

Morrow also recommends using an insect repellent containing DEET.

Fort LangleyFraser RiverLangleyMetro VancouverPaddling

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Gurinder Mann. (Submitted photo)
Surrey man receives prestigious restorative justice award

East Newton resident Gurinder Mann one of five to receive a Community Safety and Crime Prevention Award

An example of a Surrey Police cruiser, showcased at Mayor Doug McCallum’s State of the City Address at Civic Hotel in May of 2019. (File photo: Amy Reid)
Surrey Police Service looking to hire in-house lawyer

Solicitor to work within Office of the Chief Constable, serve on internal and external committees to ‘represent the SPS’s interests’

Surrey provincial court. (File photo: Tom Zytaruk)
New COVID-19 protocols set for provincial courthouses

The new rules were issued on Jan. 21, and took effect immediately

Tyler Tardi will serve as a fifth on Team Laycock at the 2021 Tim Hortons Brier. (Black Press Media file photo)
Tyler Tardi to serve as alternate for B.C. team at Brier

Langley/Cloverdale curler to serve as ‘fifth’ on Team Laycock at Calgary-hosted championships

Surrey RCMP say that after checking on a “semi-conscious” driver in Whalley on Jan. 20, 2021, officers found about 21 grams of suspected cocaine, 68 grams of suspected fentanyl, about $1,400 in case, a stolen shotgun and ammunition. (Photo: Surrey RCMP handout)
Surrey RCMP say ‘semi-conscious’ driver found with drugs, gun

Officer saw ‘open alcohol and suspected drugs’ inside the vehicle, police say

Toronto Public Health nurse Lalaine Agarin sets up for mass vaccination clinic in Toronto, Jan. 17, 2021. B.C. is set to to begin its large-scale immunization program for the general public starting in April. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
B.C.’s COVID-19 mass vaccinations expected to start in April

Clinics to immunize four million people by September

Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam speaks during a daily briefing in Ottawa. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld)
31 cases of COVID-19 variants detected in Canada: Health officials

Dr. Theresa Tam made announces 13 more variant COVID-19 cases in Canada

Daily COVID-19 cases reported to each B.C. health region, to Jan. 20, 2021. Island Health in blue, Northern Health green, Interior Health orange, Vancouver Coastal in red and Fraser Health in purple. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infection rate stays stable with 508 cases Friday

Vaccine delivered to more than 110,000 high-risk people

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

The District of Saanich’s communications team decided to take part in a viral trend on Thursday and photoshopped U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders into a staff meeting photo. (District of Saanich/Twitter)
Bernie Sanders makes guest appearance municipal staff meeting in B.C.

Vancouver Island firefighters jump on viral trend of photoshopped U.S. senator

School District 57 headquarters in Prince George. (Mark Nielsen, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter)
Prince George school district settles with sexual abuse victim

Terms were part of an out-of-court settlement reached with Michael Bruneau, nearly four years after he filed a lawsuit

Police in Vancouver looking for male suspect who allegedly spat and attacked a store manager for not wearing a mask, at 7-Eleven near Alma Street and West 10th Avenue just before noon on Dec. 17, 2020. (Vancouver police handout)
VIDEO: Man spits on 7-Eleven manager over mask rule, sparking Vancouver police probe

‘Unfortunately, the store manager sustained a cut to his head during the assault’

The Vancouver-based SAR team successfully rescued two lost snowshoers off of the west side of Tim Jones Peak in the early morning of Monday, Jan. 19. (North Shore Rescue photo)
B.C.’s busiest SAR team raises alarm after 2021 begins with fatality, multiple rescues

‘People beyond ski resort areas of Seymour, Grouse, and Cypress go without cell reception,’ SAR warns

Competitors make their way through the course at the 2019 Canadian Cross Country Championships, which was hosted by Abbotsford in 2019. (File photo)
Abbotsford to host 2023 Canadian Cross Country Championships

Clearbrook Park last hosted the event in 2019, Ottawa hosting 2021 and 2022 races

Most Read