Snow Pool Mosquitoes and Fairy Shrimp
(Note:click on an image to enlarge it)
Some snow melt pools, or vernal pools, can contain tens of thousands of mosquito larvae. These photos and videos were taken on 30 March 2015, Alpine County. “T-pool” is named for being the top of a “T’, coming up from ‘Fairy Shrimp Pool’ (see below).
Fairy Shrimp Pool
Views of Fairy Shrimp Pond, from both ends. This vernal pool is home to a species of fairy shrimp, as well as a lot of snow pool mosquitoes.
The fairy shrimp species is probably Streptocephalus sealii, as it matches the description and distribution. This distribution map is from Fairy Shrimps Of California’s Puddles, Pools, And Playas by Clyde H. Eriksen and Denton Belk, 1999.
This vernal pool contains surprisingly few mosquito larvae, despite its large size, and this rarity of mosquitoes occurs year to year.
Bloods Meadow Pool
Bloods Meadow is home to a very large vernal pool in early spring. We find mosquito larvae all around its fringes, and in various locations within the meadow itself.
Sierran Treefrog – Pseudacris sierra is common near Bloods Meadow pool.