For Immediate Release
Contact: Scott Oxarart
775.328.2414 or 775.276.1021
RENO, NV, May 29, 2019 – The Washoe County Health District will conduct its second seasonal mosquito larviciding application beginning in the early morning hours of May 31, 2019. The helicopter operation will cover approximately 1,000 acres in Washoe County from the North Valleys to Washoe Lake. The spread of dry granular pesticide on wetlands and areas of standing water will reduce mosquito populations in the Silver Lake, Swan Lake, Kiley Ranch, Rosewood Lakes, South Meadows, Damonte Ranch, and Washoe Lake areas.
Health officials report this application will consist of Vectolex FG, a granular formulation of larvicide bacteria, Bacillus sphaericus, for residual control of mosquito larvae. The larvicide specifically targets mosquito larvae with no effects to humans, fish, water fowl, or other non-targeted insects such as bees. It kills larvae before they become flying, biting, disease-transmitting adult mosquitos. Vectolex provides extended control of all Culex species of mosquitos, which are known for carrying West Nile Virus (WNV), an arbovirus that can be fatal to humans, equines, avians, and more. WNV was first introduced to the United States in 1999 and is rapidly spreading across the country.
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 repellents, applying a layer directly on skin, and one on clothing for maximum protection;
- Keep window and door screens in good repair to prevent mosquitos from entering 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 like pet bowls and planters. These may become mosquito breeding grounds.
The Vector-Borne Diseases Program has mosquito fish available for ponds, troughs and other large water containers. The small minnow-sized fish feed on mosquito larvae and prevent them from hatching into biting adult mosquitos.
In other Vector-Borne Diseases Program news, the program is closing its offices in Panther Valley and relocating to the Health District's main offices at 1001 East Ninth Street, Building B, in Reno. The new phone number to reach Vector staff is 775-328-2434. People are encouraged to report biting mosquito activity by calling 775-328-2434, and staff will investigate the source of these adult mosquitos.