Vladislav Balakshii for Unsplash

For much of the year around these parts, because of heat and humidity, outdoor dining and other al fresco activities can be uncomfortable. When you factor in the gnats and mosquitos and other pests, it can be downright unbearable. It can also be hazardous to our health. And I’m not just being grumpy — there is new data revealing Dallas is the buggiest city in America.

Researchers at TruGreen, a national lawn care company, conducted a meta study to determine homeowners’ biggest pest challenges (nationwide, mosquitoes, say 47% of respondents, and ticks, say 37%, account for the biggest concerns along with a small percentage of others). Internal and external data from January 1, 2021 – December 31, 2021, helped TruGreen analysts rank the top metropolitan areas most impacted by mosquitoes, fleas and ticks, the company says, and Dallas landed at the top.

“With warmer weather and the official start of spring, the arrival of mosquitoes, fleas and ticks are soon to follow,” says Brian Feldman, TruGreen director of technical operations. “By making citizens aware now, our hope is that we can help homeowners begin to combat these pests and the potential diseases they carry — such as West Nile, Zika, and Lyme disease — before they cause a bigger problem during the humid summer months when they are most persistent. Protecting against and controlling these nuisance pests helps homeowners enjoy living life outside all season long.”

Just last week Dallas County reported its first case of West Nile virus in 2022. The virus is transmitted through the bite of infected mosquitoes. Only about 20% of those exposed develop symptoms like headache, fever, muscle and joint aches, nausea and fatigue. In less than 1%, the virus affects the nervous system, leading to the more serious West Nile neuroinvasive disease that can be fatal. The health department urges common-sense precautions such as using insect repellant and removing standing water that can attract mosquitos. TrueGreen offers some of their expert tips here.

Buggiest cities:

  • Dallas-Fort Worth, TX
  • New York, NY
  • San Antonio, TX
  • Chicago, IL
  • Boston, MA
  • Detroit, MI
  • Washington, DC
  • Houston, TX
  • Atlanta, GA
  • Los Angeles, CA
  • TampaSt. PetersburgSarasota, FL
  • Charlotte, NC
  • Orlando-Daytona Beach-Melbourne, FL
  • Columbus, OH
  • MiamiFort Lauderdale, FL
  • HartfordNew Haven, CT
  • Milwaukee, WI
  • Raleigh-Durham, NC
  • Grand RapidsKalamazooBattle Creek, MI
  • Cincinnati, OH

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