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Mowing dry detention basins makes mosquito problems worse, team finds

A study of the risk associated with “dry” water-detention basins in took an unexpected turn when land managers started mowing the basins. The mowing of in basins that failed to drain properly led to a boom in populations of Culex pipiens mosquitoes, which can carry and transmit the deadly virus, researchers report.

Mow to Grow Mosquitoes
Mowing wetland plants can increase populations of mosquitoes that carry the West Nile virus, researchers report.
Credit: Julie McMahon


The INHS is a division of the at the U. of I.

The U. of I. School of Integrative Biology; the Institute for Sustainability, Energy and the Environment; and the Illinois Used Tire Management Fund supported this research.

The paper: “Invasive aquatic macrophytes in urban stormwater habitats and West Nile virus transmission risk”

Cascade of ecological consequences for West Nile virus transmission when aquatic macrophytes invade stormwater habitats.

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign