First it was the pollen. Now Central New York is being invaded by insects.

Mayflies are similar to dragonflies. There are 600 different species in the United States and thousands worldwide and these little flying insects are everywhere.

You can find mayflies around lakes, ponds, rivers and streams but they don't live long. Some only about 90 minutes after they emerge from water.

Snow Plows Clear Mayflies

Females deposit eggs in the water where the larvae spends anywhere from 10 days and 2 years. When they emerge as adults, the New York State Parks Department says they arrive all at the same time.

"Sometimes, the density of the adult mayflies is so great that they appear on Doppler radar and snow plows are needed to clear the roads."

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Credit - Steve Scott
Credit - Steve Scott
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When do Mayflies Appear

They may be called mayflies but the National Wildlife Federation says the adults appear anytime between May through September. The biggest number of hatches usually occur in late June through early July. In Central New York its more like mid June.

Don't worry. Mayflies won't harm you. They don't bite or sting. But they do create quite a disturbance.

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Since mayflies emerge all at once they tend to die in large numbers and pile up below lights and windows like they are now doing in Sylvan Beach.

Avoid Mayfly Pileups

Swarms can be more than 800 feet and cover over a hundred of square miles.

The insects are attracted to light, which can lead them to swarm around buildings at night. To help avoid mayflies piling up around your home or business, try swapping out your white lights for yellow bulbs.

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