The winter in Montana has been a mild one. Yes we did have a cold snap that saw record low temperatures across the state, but there wasn't a lot of snow that came with  those temperatures. The cold also didn't last very long. Some Montana ski areas were forced to close early this season and some ski areas opened much later than they normally would.

So Far Spring Has Been Mild

So far our spring has been pretty mild one too as far as precipitation. These weather patterns are raising some concerns for what we can experience for the summer. In the past when Montana has a lack of moisture, there is a possibility of an active fire season.

Read More: Montana's Fire Season May Not Be As Bad As We Feared

Last Year Was a "Banner Year" for Mosquitoes

With the change of the season we can also expect a visit in Montana from the "most deadly animal" on the planet. That would be the dreaded mosquito. Last year we had a lot of moisture and it was a "banner year" for mosquito activity, especially in Western Montana. With the weather we have seen so far this year, what can we expect for the 2024 "mosquito forecast"?

Western Montana's "Mosquito Forecast"

I spoke with Layne Von Lanken, the integrated pest management coordinator for Missoula County about what we can expect for mosquitoes this year. If you aren't a fan of mosquitoes, this will be some good news. According to Layne:

In my opinion, I believe that we will have less mosquitoes this year. Most of the mosquitoes that we trapped last year were all of the species 80s vexans were, which are nuisance mosquitoes. I predict that because of most of those mosquitoes lay their eggs in areas that are waiting to be re-wetted the following spring, I predict that our numbers will be lower this year just due to less amounts of precipitation. Our water tables are probably not going to rise as high as they have in recent years. 

That is good news if you aren't a fan of mosquitoes, but it isn't all good news.  Mosquitoes are a good source of food for bats, birds, dragonflies and other animals in Montana.

This year the Lolo Mosquito District is hoping to less "adult fogging" in the area and focus more on larva work. They use backpack sized devices that spread granules that go in the water and sit and wait until larvae hatch, then kill them before they can become adults. For those that would like more information regarding this, you can email Layne at

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A Lot Will Depend on Western Montana's Weather and Runoff

We will have to keep an eye on what kind of precipitation we will get this spring in Montana, but for now, it looks like there won't be a lot of mosquitoes in the forecast.

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