The worst of the moths and mosquitoes could soon be over.
When it comes to the moths, UNBC professor and forest entomologist Staffan Lindgren is advising people to "grin and bear" it for another week and a half before the outbreak starts to subside.
As for the mosquitoes, signs are the pools of water brought on by the high spring waters are now drying up, so that they too should ease off over the next week or two, according to city horticultural foreman Larry Ward.
The moths are the result of the abundance of tent caterpillars that struck about a month-and-a-half ago, leaving trees covered in fuzzy, wriggly larvae with a voracious appetite for foliage before they sprouted wings.
The city refrained from spraying for the pests at the caterpillar stage and Lindgren said most trees will survive
"The caterpillars aren't doing any real harm other than the 'ick' factor," he said. "People don't like them but they're not really causing any major damage.
"The odd tree, if it's already sort of weak and it doesn't have a lot of reserves and it gets defoliated two or three years in a row, then it may die or the tops may die."
Other than for high-value trees in danger of harm, Lindgren said spraying is not worthwhile and added the young larvae feed on aspen and not much else.
"Any other tree, you don't really have to worry about until later on," he said. "And you can protect them by wrapping them with Saran wrap and putting on some sticky stuff. Then the larvae can't climb up."
He said the high numbers typically last two to three years before crashing due to a lack of food. An outbreak typically occurs every eight to 10 years, Lindgren said.
Lindgren characterized the mosquito season as average on balance.
"The populations have been very low because it's been so cold but on the other hand it's been wet so there are lots of bodies of standing water where they can breed up very quickly in this heat," Lindgren said. "So they're certainly starting to show up in force right now. Unless it stays very hot and dry and everything dries up very quickly, we'll probably see a lot of mosquitoes."
However, Ward said that the city has being doing spot treatments in response to a hatching last week as a result of the high water and they should be an issue for only the next few days.
"I can't say 100 per cent it's going to be for the season but it should be the last hatch for the season," Ward said.
The city's mosquito program was not affected by budget cuts, Ward said.
Out in the rural areas, the picture has not been so pretty.
James Carlson, who lives on Foreman Road about two kilometres outside city limits, said the high water table has created vast breeding grounds for mosquitoes. They've become so thick, Carlson said, that most people could not last for 10 minutes outside.
"They're in your nose, it's just horrendous," Carlson said.
Fraser-Fort George Regional District director Kevin Dunphy said an outcry about mosquitoes is an annual event but added that a study several years ago showed a rural mosquito program is costly and ineffective.
"When I first got elected, I looked into it but I learned in a short time it's not feasible," Dunphy said.
But he did say if there is enough public support, he'll pursue the matter regardless.