Water Quality Tested After Midge Flies Invade Areas of Lee County

by | Apr 12, 2021 | Press

Originally published by WINK News on April 12, 2021

After swarms of midge flies invaded areas of Lee County, water quality was cited as a possible reason.

The bugs covered walls and lanai screens, traveled in swarms, and caused quite a commotion, especially in areas along the Caloosahatchee River.

“They seek out light, they congregate around light. And by the way, they’re not going to bite you, sting you, cause diseases, they’re just a nuisance,” said Stephen Brown, a horticulture extension agent with UF/IFAS Extension Lee County.

Once we learned midge flies could be a reflection of poor water quality, WINK News had Sanders Laboratories take water samples for us from around Lee County, including Billy Creek, from Shady Oaks Park and the Caloosahatchee in downtown Fort Myers.

“There’s concern that water quality is changing, and the amount of sedimentation or muck that builds up in the river that, you know, the juvenile stage of this fly likes to be in that part of the habitat or the environment. So that’s changing through time,” said John Cassani, Calusa Waterkeeper.

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