Fair warning: Do not continue reading if bugs give you goose bumps and gross you out. We're talking lots and lots of mayflies.
Mating season this summer is creating a mass buzz in the upper Mississippi River Valley.
Sunday evening, wary Wisconsinites near La Crosse crawled for cover, while others caught the swarm of flies on camera.
The bugs even appeared on the weather radar as they emanated from the river bottom to mate, breed and spread. (Yellow indicates a higher concentration of energy.)
The females return to the river to lay eggs, which one video shows hatching moments after being laid.
Dr. Bennett Jordan, from the National Pest Management Association, told Yahoo that for residents near these bugs, it might be wise to stay inside and of course, drive carefully. He also advised that home and business owners, "can minimize populations in an immediate area by changing lighting. Mercury-vapor lamps should be replaced with high pressure sodium vapor lamps and white incandescent and fluorescent bulbs should be replaced with yellow bulbs."
Dr. Jordan also added some mayfly facts that are too interesting not to pass along. They are, oddly enough, not flies at all, as flies are from a different order. There are 610 species of mayflies, and adults live only a few hours to a few days.
The mayfly activity apparently signals healthy water quality and nature at its swarmiest.
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- Nature & Environment