Gross! Millions of mayflies captured on radar and with photos

Posted at 1:05 PM, Jun 27, 2019
and last updated 2019-06-27 13:05:10-04

Mayflies are something Northeast Ohio residents deal with on a yearly basis, but the sheer number of winged insects that have descended on some areas is just plain crazy.

A man in Port Clinton captured photos of the mayflies swarming over parked cars at the Miller Ferry Thursday morning. There are so many of the bugs that parts of the parking lot have been completely covered. An employee at Miller Ferry said they see similar events every year and they suspect there was a gigantic "hatch" of the bugs late Wednesday night or Thursday morning.

"They are attracted to light, so that car must have been under the light," the employee said. It's one of the reasons the ferry has so few lights in the parking lot there. They don't want people to have to deal with a yearly swarm of the bugs.


But Ohio Department of Natural Resources spokesperson said they don’t believe the photos show a “natural occurrence." ODNR says the bugs may have been blown over the cars and parking lot.

On Wednesday night, there were so many of the insects flying over the lake and Port Clinton area they were picked up on radar.

According to Encyclopedia Britannica, there are more than 2,500 species of mayflies worldwide and about 700 in the United States. Adult mayflies’ lifespans are very short, lasting usually only several days.

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