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Health District to Conduct Aerial Mosquito Abatement
Helicopter larviciding application expected to reduce number of mosquitos in the area

Media Release
For Immediate Release

Contact: Scott Oxarart
775.328.2414 or 775.276.1021

Reno, Nev. May 4, 2020 – The Washoe County Health District (WCHD) will conduct the first of several aerial larviciding applications on Tuesday to prevent mosquitos in Washoe County.

The Health District’s Vector-Borne Diseases Program organizes the annual helicopter application of the larvicide, which will cover approximately 1,000 acres in Washoe County from the North Valleys to Washoe Lake.

The application consists of small, circular tablets that contain Methoprene, which prevents the emergence of adult mosquitos. Halting the growth of biting mosquitos can also prevent the spread of arboviruses like West Nile Virus (WNV), a virus most commonly spread to people by mosquito bites. In North America, cases of WNV occur during mosquito season, which starts in the summer and continues through fall.

The Health District will conduct additional applications in the coming months that are expected to reduce the number of mosquitos; however, health officials suggest taking steps to avoid being bitten by mosquitos during the spring and summer months:

  • 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)
  • 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 also 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 mosquitos. If you are experiencing biting mosquitos, call the Vector-Borne Diseases Program at 775-328-2434, and staff will investigate the source of the adult mosquitos. 

The Washoe County Health District has jurisdiction over all public health matters in Reno, Sparks, and Washoe County through the policy-making Washoe County District Board of Health. The District consists of five divisions: Administrative Health Services, Air Quality Management, Community and Clinical Health Services, Environmental Health Services and Epidemiology & Public Health Preparedness. To learn more, visit https://www.washoecounty.us/health/   

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