Mosquito season comes early this year

In this photo made available by the University of Notre Dame via the CDC, an Anopheles funestus mosquito takes a blood meal from a human host. (AP Photo/CDC, University of Notre Dame, James Gathany)

March 2, 2012 5:31:09 PM PST
While it was nice to have all that rain last month, there is a consequence -- mosquitoes. Not only are there new nests, but we're also having to deal with nests that have been dormant during the drought, and that means a lot of biting and itching.

The mosquito sprays are already on the aisle corner at Bering's Hardware in West University and there are willing buyers.

"On the outside of my door, as I go into my house, the mosquitoes are just ready to run or fly into the house," said Barbara Crook, who was buying mosquito spray Friday.

West University Place was scheduled to launch its first mosquito spraying of the year Friday night, about two months earlier than last year.

"Last year, we started later, but we sprayed later into November," said Dave Beach with West University Public Works. "Normally we stop at the end of October. It depends on your weather conditions and that's what leads to your mosquitoes."

West U. consists of only 2.2 square miles. Harris County, tens of thousands. So its spraying operation is driven by the presence of West Nile Virus, among others in mosquito traps.

So far, none have tested positive, but the mosquito season is getting off to an early start. In truth, with a mild winter, it never really ended.

"Right now, we're having a tremendous amount of mosquito population due to flood water and backwater conditions, and until everything dries out, we're going to have mosquito problems," said Dr. Jim Bennett with Harris County Mosquito Control.

Harris County doesn't spray for pest mosquitos. Ft. Bend County hasn't started its mosquito spraying. Brazoria County has.