Hope-area residents near flooded properties are finding they can’t go outside without dealing with an overwhelming cloud of mosquitos. (Ned Rozell/Yukon News)

Hope-area residents near flooded properties are finding they can’t go outside without dealing with an overwhelming cloud of mosquitos. (Ned Rozell/Yukon News)

Post-flood mosquito outbreak a problem for Hope residents

Clouds of blood suckers are hatching from stagnant water left by the recently rising river

Mosquitos are a nuisance every year, but moreso when flooding happens.

Hope-area residents are finding that out this year. Jenn Miller, who lives in Laidlaw, took to Facebook recently, saying she can’t set foot outside without being attacked by a cloud of bloodsuckers.

“It’s like nothing I’ve ever seen before,” she lamented. “I have not planted any flowers or gardened this year. I just can’t spend the time out there to do it.”

Miller lives on a hobby farm near the shores of the Fraser River. As waters rose in recent weeks, her back yard was flooded, and mosquitos love nothing more than pools of stagnant water. They lay their eggs and within a few days they are everywhere.

Miller has a pair of miniature goats, along with a turkey, a pony and a pig, plus ducks and chickens.

While she can stay inside, there’s no way to fully protect them from the mosquito onslaught.

“I’ve been leaving my pony in the barn, so she hasn’t been outside to graze,” Miller said. “The goats, pig, turkey and chickens all go out throughout the day, but have access to their pens in the barn. There’s not much else we can do for the animals. Luckily the mosquitoes aren’t nearly as bad in the barn.”

RELATED: Late spring, high water on Fraser River ‘a perfect scenario’ for floodwater mosquito breeding

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

Miller said she feeds them in the evening, then runs right back into the house.

“Then I spend all night killing all the mosquitoes that got in the house from opening the door,” she said.

“I’ve never seen anything like this in my life. It’s beyond frustrating, as well as irritating.”

The Fraser Valley Regional District (FVRD) and partner Morrow Bioscience have a program for dealing with post-flood mosquitos. According to fvrd.ca/EN/main/services/mosquitoes.html, they try to get to the insects when they’re in the larval stage, before they take to the air as adults.

Miller was expecting Morrow Bioscience technicians to drop by last week.

“They’re going to be testing the amount of larvae in the flood waters on our property,” she said. “They put something in the water to kill all larvae so they can’t hatch out.”

That ‘something’ is a bacterial larvacide that kills mosquito larvae without affecting other creatures in the water.

Another Facebook poster dealing with the same problem responded to Miller, giving a less-than-rosy assessment.

“They have treated the water in my backyard twice but it hasn’t made much difference,” Jeanie Perry wrote. “We can’t go outside.”

Unfortunately for Miller and Perry, that’s as good as it gets for problem solving, with the FVRD website noting that there is no fogging or spraying for adult mosquitos.

If you have a mosquito outbreak on your property, or feel you may have one soon, send an email to Mosquitos@ fvrd.ca.


@ProgressSports
eric.welsh@theprogress.com

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B.C. Floods 2021hope

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