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Published January 09, 2014, 06:59 PM

A look at the benefits of subzero temperatures

Fargo, ND (WDAY TV) - After this latest cold snap, we're all painfully aware of the downside of living in subzero temperatures.

By: Drew Trafton, WDAY

Fargo, ND (WDAY TV) - After this latest cold snap, we're all painfully aware of the downside of living in subzero temperatures.

However, do you ever take time to reflect on how the cold has a positive impact on the world around us?

It may be hard to imagine right now, but the more layers you have to put on in January can mean less bug spray to apply in July.

Retired Entomologist Maurie Degrugillier says the cold won't outright kill mosquitoes, but it will push their peak season back.

DeGrugillier: "It's setting them back so they have to start from low numbers in the Spring and then, of course, as the summer progresses, they'll build up in numbers."

The cold is also credited as a wall for keeping many tree killing pests from other regions of the United States frozen out of the north."

DeGrugillier"A bad winter with not too much snow cover can really reduce the incidents of the pest."

Eric Lamun, the Red River Zoo's General Curator, comes from Louisiana and says his animals see a benefit from the cold their southern counterparts have to live without.

Lamun: "We find the need to have to treat our animals for things like tape worm or round worms, the problems with West Nile Disease being transmitted by mosquitoes for less here than it would be in Texas."

And the range in temperature for cold to have an impact on disease carrying insects such as ticks can be extremely slim.

"Maybe an average temperature of just a couple of degrees is thought to maybe be able to allow the ticks to have a little bit longer season, put a little more stress and strain on animals, and that's one of the thoughts they think might be affecting our moose populations here in southern Minnesota and North Dakota."

So, the next time you're cursing the cold, just remember, it might make your day on the lake a little more enjoyable next summer.

Extreme temperatures have also been shown to have a few positive impacts on the human body as well.

Cold can activate a certain type of fat in our body that increases our metabolism.

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