With the winter of 2012 turning out to be mild so far, many are beginning to question whether the warmer weather will lead to increased populations of insects this spring.

As far north as Minneapolis, nighttime temperatures are only dipping into the 20s and snow depth is far less than last year, according to television station meteorologist Sven Sundgaard. He says temperatures are averaging seven degrees above normal for January.

Jeff Hahn, University of Minnesota Extension entomologist, warns that warmer winter weather doesn’t necessarily mean insects will be out of control this spring. He cautioned that producers consider snow cover, ground freezing and precipitation as factors that could impact this spring’s insect populations.

Sundgaard reminded readers that winter is not over and patterns could still change, which could impact spring populations.