This year's unseasonably warm winter means that bugs usually killed by the cold have hung around -- and they're hungry. As temps continue to rise, mosquitos and other biting insects are becoming increasingly pesky for lovers of the outdoors across the country -- and experts predict they'll be more plentiful than normal all season.
A new survey conducted by OFF! Insect Repellents ranked the top 50 U.S. cities most affected by mosquitos. The survey asked nearly 5,000 people to rate how strongly they agreed with the following statements, in relation to their home towns:
- I don’t walk outside without bug spray.
- I use bug spray when out for more than 30 minutes.
- Mosquitos are only bad in the evening.
- Mosquitos come out occasionally and are not a nuisance.
- Mosquitos are rarely a problem.
While mosquitos can carry various diseases like malaria, West Nile and encephalitis, only 29 percent of the respondents said they fear mosquitos for health reasons, while nearly 60 percent fear mosquitos because of those perpetually-itchy bites, according to the data, which was shared with HuffPost Healthy Living. Bugs are particularly prevalent in the South, where warmer weather means mosquitos can breed more months of the year.
Nationwide, about 9 percent of people say they don't walk outside without bug spray, and nearly 10 percent say they use bug spray when out for more than 30 minutes. Just over a quarter of respondents said mosquitos are only bad in the evening, or come out occasionally and don’t pose much of a problem. Nearly 30 percent said mosquitos are rarely a problem. In the buggiest cities, however, these stats are drastically different. Click through the slideshow below to see if your city made the list, and how the buggiest cities measure up. Then tell us in the comments how buggy your city is.
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