For one city in North Carolina, the fallout from Hurricane Florence includes mosquitoes three times bigger than normal.
Fayetteville is dealing with an infestation of aggressive insects that hatched when Florence flooded the area.
Michael Reiskind, an entomology professor at North Carolina State University, told the Fayetteville Observor that most eggs from the 61 species of mosquitoes in the area die before they hatch. But this year, billions of Psorophora ciliata have swarmed.
“In a normal year, in the absence of a hurricane or significant rainfall, most of those eggs would probably die before ever getting a chance to hatch,” he said. “But with all the water that has come up, they have gotten a chance to hatch. In some cases, the eggs may live one year.”
One Fayetteville resident had a terrifying metaphor for the takeover.
“A bad science fiction movie,” Robert Phillips told the newspaper. “They were inundating me, and one landed on me. It was like a small blackbird. I told my wife, ‘Gosh, look at the size of this thing.’ I told her that I guess I’m going to have to use a shotgun on these things if they get any bigger.”
Gov. Roy Cooper announced Wednesday that $4 million would be put toward mosquito control efforts in 27 counties in North Carolina.