First mosquito abatement operation of 2018 starts Wednesday
Larviciding will cover 1,200 acres throughout southern Washoe County

Media Release
For Immediate Release

Contact: Scott Oxarart
775.328.2414 or 775.276.1021

RENO, NEV., April 24, 2018 – The Washoe County Health District will conduct the first seasonal helicopter larviciding application beginning in the early morning hours of April 25 and 26, with subsequent applications planned for May, June, July, August and September. The larviciding will cover approximately 1,200 acres in Washoe County from the North Valleys to Washoe Lake. This is one of the earliest applications for mosquito prevention, made possible because of additional funding provided to the Health District’s Vector-Borne Disease program by the Washoe County Commission. 

Health officials report the applications will consist of Vectolex and MetaLarv, biological larvicides that exist naturally in the environment which specifically target mosquito larvae with no affects to humans, fish, water fowl or other non-target organism's such as bees. Future applications coincide with the effectiveness of the product in order to interrupt the lifecycle of mosquitos at the larvae stage, killing larvae before they become flying, biting, disease-transmitting adult mosquitos. 

Health officials remind people that it only takes a few consecutive days of warm weather for mosquitos to become active. So everyone should take precautionary measures and steps to avoid being bitten by mosquitos. During the spring and summer months people should: 

  • Wear long sleeve shirts and long pants in mosquito prone areas, especially in early morning and evening hours when mosquitos are most active;
  • Use mosquito repellent such as DEET, oil of lemon eucalyptus, Picaridin, IR3535, or other natural products – a layer directly on skin, and one on clothing works well;
  • Keep window and door screens in good repair to prevent entry of mosquitos into homes;
  • Vaccinate horses for Western Equine Encephalitis (WEE) and West Nile Virus (WNV); and,
  • Clear areas around living spaces of any free-standing water and containers that can hold even small amounts of water that may become a mosquito breeding-ground.

The Vector-Borne Diseases Program also has mosquito fish available for ponds, troughs and other water containers which will feed on mosquito larvae and prevent them from hatching into biting adult mosquitos.

If you are experiencing biting mosquitos call the Vector-Borne Diseases Program at 785-4599, and staff will investigate the source of these adult mosquitos.


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Call 311 to find resources, ask questions, and utilize Washoe County services. Learn More »