Hurricane Harvey has already ruined infrastructure, left thousands homeless and claimed dozens of lives in southeastern Texas. Now, it's aftermath has brought in millions of unwanted visitors.
Experts warned that the warm, muggy climate and standing floodwaters in the Houston area would cause the mosquito population to explode, and astounding images and videos shared on social media show exactly that.
On Monday, workers in Refugio, Texas captured cell phone image a swarm of thousands of mosquitoes that covered their legs and arms. Thankfully clad in long sleeves, long pants and mosquito nets video captured one man saying that the images "didn't do it justice."
According to Gizmodo, photos shared on the Houston subreddit showed the bugs swarming cars, making license plates unreadable.
Volunteers and those left homeless by the storm are being encouraged to wear long sleevs and pants — despite hot temperatures — to protect against mosquito bites.
Everyone helping in Texas please be aware of the mosquitoes! Wear long pants/sleeves. Use repellent. They carry too many diseases to list. pic.twitter.com/it8Z8Xq8al
— Bill Spielberger USA (@bspielb) September 3, 2017
According to the Washington Post, the boom in the mosquito population will decline as floodwaters recede. However, problems wrought by the parasites could have long-lasting effects: In the year following Hurricane Katrina, cases of West Nile virus more than doubled.
Alex Hider is a writer for the E.W. Scripps National Desk. Follow him on Twitter @alexhider.