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Blind Mosquito Florida | Port St. Lucie, Delray Beach

In the warm, humid air of Southeast and Central Florida, residents often find themselves amidst black swarms that, upon closer inspection (if you even dare get closer), turn out to be neither bees nor a cloud of soot, but aquatic midges.


Commonly called the blind mosquito, Florida residents often encounter these insects at night, at dawn, or in the very early morning hours. While the term often conjures images of pesky bloodsuckers, these bugs are not mosquitoes at all. Aquatic midges are flies belonging to the Chironomidae family.


Despite their nickname, they do not bite or feed on blood. Their resemblance to mosquitoes is superficial. In reality, they are a distinct species of fly that poses a different kind of nuisance to Floridians.


Key Takeaways

  • Blind mosquitoes, or aquatic midges, are not blood-sucking pests but flies from the Chironomidae family, which can be a nuisance due to their swarming nature and the mess they leave behind.

  • Their life cycle is unique, with eggs laid on water surfaces, larvae that live in water feeding on organic debris, and adults that emerge solely to mate and do not feed, living only 3 to 5 days.

  • Professional pest control services are crucial for managing these pests, especially during their breeding season from April to November, to prevent the significant impact they can have on homes and businesses.

Why Are They Called Blind Mosquitoes?


A magnified macro shot of a blind mosquito

The moniker "blind mosquito" is somewhat of a wrong term to use. These insects resemble mosquitoes but lack the mouthparts necessary for biting. Unlike their biting counterparts, the non-aquatic midges, blind mosquitoes are harmless to humans as they do not suck blood.


Their presence, however, can be just as unsettling.


Aquatic Midges


Facts about the blind mosquitos


Aquatic midges, or blind mosquitoes, are often found in environments rich in nutrients, where algae are abundant. Researchers are delving into the mystery of their prevalence, with poor water quality being a prime suspect.


These aquatic midges thrive in nutrient-loaded waters, which provide ample sustenance for their larvae. They seek out cool, shady spots during the day and are attracted to outdoor lights at night, swarming en masse as adults to mate.


They play a beneficial role in the ecosystem, serving as a food source for other aquatic creatures and birds, and helping to break down organic debris. But they can wreak terrible havoc on people's properties.


Appearance


An adult green non-biting midge

Also known as "fuzzy bills" due to the males' bushy antennae, these insects can range from light green to dark brownish-black, with clear, unmarked wings. They are small, measuring just 0.2 to 0.5 inches in length.


As larvae, they look like thin red worms, which is why they are also referred to as blood worms during this stage.


Habitat and breeding grounds


Adult aquatic midges emerging from a river

The life of a blind mosquito begins in water bodies such as lakes, sewage oxidation, stormwater ponds, wastewater channels, settling ponds, and slow-moving shallow rivers. Standing water with plenty of organic material in it can also serve as a great place for them to breed.


Both natural and man-made aquatic systems can serve as nurseries for these insects.


Life cycle


The life cycle of aquatic midges is split between aquatic and terrestrial stages. These critters begin their life as eggs laid on the surface of water bodies, which then sink to the bottom and hatch within 2 to 7 days.


The larvae that hatch then create tunnels in the organic matter at the bottom of these water bodies, where they will thrive for about 2 to 7 weeks. This larval stage is crucial as they contribute to the aquatic ecosystem by recycling nutrients.


As they transition into pupae and finally emerge from the water as adults, their existence becomes fleeting. Adult midges, with mating as the primary goal, do not feed and their lifespan is remarkably short, lasting only about 3 to 5 days before they complete their life cycle.


Why Blind Mosquitoes Are Nuisances


A swarm of midges in flight

While they don't bite, aquatic midges can be an extreme nuisance. They swarm in large numbers, leaving stains and a fish-like rotting odor as they decay on surfaces such as furniture, wall finishes on buildings and houses, clothing, and cars.


The sheer volume and abundance of dead midges can accumulate in piles several inches high.


What You Can Do to Prevent Them from Your Home


The breeding season for these pests stretches from April to November. If left unchecked, the presence of a nearby water source rich in organic matter can lead to relentless breeding, causing homeowners and businesses to incur significant expenses in cleaning and damage control.


You can install insect screens to prevent them from coming inside, but that won't stop the swarms from causing damage outside your house or place of business. Light traps can lure them away from your property but won't stop them from breeding or coming back. And they will come back.


The most effective solution to get rid of these bugs is professional pest control, which can address the issue at its source and prevent the large swarms from taking over your space.


Effective Blind Mosquito Control Is Here


When the swarms of blind mosquitoes become more than a mere annoyance, it's time to call in the experts. Southeast Florida Pest Control, with branches in Delray Beach, Port St. Lucie, and across the region, stands ready to reclaim your home or business from these persistent pests.


Our seasoned professionals are well-versed in the unique challenges posed by Florida's diverse ecosystem, including the management of aquatic midges. We employ scientifically-backed strategies and environmentally responsible methods to address the root of the problem—targeting the breeding grounds and disrupting the life cycle of these nuisances.

Don't let the swarms take over your Florida experience. Contact Southeast Florida Pest Control at 855-490-1987 for a free consultation and take the first step towards a midge-free environment.


Summary

In conclusion, while blind mosquitoes in Florida may not carry diseases or suck blood, their swarming behavior and the mess they leave behind can be a significant problem. Professional mosquito control is essential in managing these pests, especially in areas near large natural lakes and settling ponds where they breed.


Frequently Asked Questions


How do I get rid of blind mosquitoes in Florida?


To mitigate blind mosquitoes, or aquatic midges, in Florida, it's essential to manage the environment they thrive in. Reducing outdoor lights that attract them at night and improving water quality to discourage their breeding can help.


What is the life cycle of a blind mosquito?


The life cycle of a blind mosquito, more accurately called an aquatic midge, includes four stages: egg, larva, pupa, and adult. Eggs are laid on water surfaces and hatch within 2 to 7 days. Larvae live in the water for 2 to 7 weeks, feeding on organic debris. They then pupate and emerge as adults, living only 3 to 5 days to mate and do not feed.


What are the bad mosquitoes in Florida?


Florida is home to several mosquito species that can be problematic, including the Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus, known for carrying diseases like Zika and dengue. These species are considered "bad" mosquitoes due to their potential health impact on humans and pets.


Why are the mosquitoes so bad in Florida right now?


Mosquito populations in Florida can surge due to factors like standing water from heavy rains, warm temperatures, and high humidity, which create ideal breeding conditions. The presence of large natural lakes, settling ponds, and stormwater ponds can also contribute to higher mosquito activity, especially during the wet season.


To effectively get rid of them, call Southeast Florida Pest Control at 855-490-1987.


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