Archive for the ‘Alabama Mosquito Control’ Category

EPA Regulations Won’t Cause Problems for Huntsville’s Mosquito Control

Tuesday, May 15th, 2012

EPA Regulations Won’t Cause Problems for Huntsville’s Mosquito Control

HUNTSVILLE, AL – State and federal agencies have changed the regulations for mosquito control, but Huntsville officials don’t expect them to bug you this summer.

The new regulations from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Alabama Department of Environmental Management require a lot more documentation and testing of areas to make sure the treatments are necessary and killing mosquitoes, said Cheryl Edge Clay, public health environmentalist who works with the city’s Vector Control.

She said the new regulations went into effect in October and won’t interrupt any services for city residents. The regulations required a permit by April 30 for cities that spray over 5,400 acres a year; Vector Control treats more than 128,000 acres in the city.

Richard Grace, the Madison County engineer, said county commissioners are aware of the new regulations from t regulations and making sure they comply. Each county commissioner takes care of his district’s needs for mosquito control outside the city, Grace said.

Clay had to put together a detailed pesticide discharge management plan that describes mosquito problems and what, if any, impact the spraying would have on the environment.

“The biggest change is, there will be a lot more documentation, requirement of data and followup inspections,” Clay said. “This summer we don’t expect to interrupt services with the new monitoring program. Residents can expect the same quality service as we’ve had in the past.

“We may not spray every Monday or Tuesday night. We’re going to spray where we can be most effective.”

Clay said Vector Control will begin using its mosquito fogging trucks — carrying a truck-mounted sprayer that shoots ultra low volume mist, she said — the first week of June. Currently, Vector Control is targeting the mosquitos larvae in swamps and other areas they are known to habitat with biological larvacide, which is much more environmentally friendly.

Clay says the city uses a non-toxic, low concentration chemical when it sprays at night. It also uses a non-toxic spray for the biological larvacide and even uses tiny mosquito fish, which they stock in ditches where mosquitoes are a problem.

Vector Control is asking beekeepers to call the office so the trucks can avoid spraying in their areas.

Clay said it’s not possible to visit every home in the city, so it helps if the public can to minimize areas that hold stagnant water. “Even a teaspoon of water can breed mosquitos,” Clay said.

For more information, go to www.mosquito.org/control.

The city’s Vector Control deals with mosquito control and encourages all residents to minimize areas that can hold stagnant water, such as old tires, bird baths, flower pots, pet water bowls, and poorly maintained fountains, gutters, and swimming pools. If you are a beekeeper in or near Huntsville, call 256-883-5872 so your area can be avoided until after sunset during fogging season.

Military Medicine’s Long War Against Malaria

Friday, September 2nd, 2011

Military Medicine’s Long War Against Malaria

by Richard Knox

Walter Reed researchers race to develop what many had thought impossible: an effective vaccine.

http://www.npr.org/2011/09/01/139641878/at-walter-reed-military-medicine-fights-malaria

Mutant mosquitoes: Malaysia release of genetically modified insects sparks fears of uncontrollable new species

Monday, January 31st, 2011

Malaysia has released 6,000 genetically modified mosquitoes into a forest in the first experiment of its kind in Asia aimed at curbing dengue fever.

The field test is meant to pave the way for the official use of genetically engineered Aedes aegypti male mosquitoes to mate with females and produce offspring with shorter lives, thus curtailing the population.

Only female Aedes aegypti mosquitoes spread dengue fever, which killed 134 people in Malaysia last year.
Malaysia has released 6,000 genetically modified Aedes aegypti male mosquitoes into a forest in the first experiment of its kind in Asia aimed at curbing dengue fever

Malaysia has released 6,000 genetically modified Aedes aegypti male mosquitoes into a forest in a bid to curb rates of dengue fever.

However, the plan has sparked criticism by some Malaysian environmentalists, who fear it might have unforeseen consequences, such as the inadvertent creation of uncontrollable mutated mosquitoes.

Critics also say such plans could leave a vacuum in the ecosystem that is then filled by another insect species, potentially introducing new diseases.

A similar trial in the Cayman Islands last year – the first time genetically modified mosquitoes have been set loose in the wild after years of laboratory experiments and hypothetical calculations – resulted in a dramatic drop in the mosquito population in a small area studied by researchers.

Government authorities have tried to allay the concerns by saying they are conducting small-scale research and will not rush into any widespread release of mosquitoes.

The Malaysian government-run Institute for Medical Research said it released about 6,000 non-biting sterile male lab mosquitoes in an uninhabited forest area in eastern Malaysia on December 21.

Another 6,000 wild male Aedes aegypti mosquitoes were also placed in the area for scientific comparison, it said in a statement.
The plan has sparked criticism by some environmentalists, who fear it might have unforeseen consequences, such as the inadvertent creation of uncontrollable mutated mosquitoes in the section of Malaysian forest

The plan has sparked criticism by some environmentalists, who fear it might have unforeseen consequences, such as the inadvertent creation of uncontrollable mutated mosquitoes in the section of Malaysian forest

The institute provided few details of the experiment, but said it was ‘successfully’ concluded on January 5, and that all the mosquitoes were killed with insecticide.

It was not planning to release any more mosquitoes until it had analysed the results of the lab mosquitoes’ life span and extent of their dispersal in the wild.

It was the first such trial in Asia, an official in the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment said on condition of anonymity because he was not authorised to make public statements.

In the Cayman Islands, genetically altered sterile male mosquitoes were also set loose by scientists in a 40-acre region between May and October last year.

By August, mosquito numbers in that area dropped by 80 per cent compared with a neighbouring area where no sterile mosquitoes were released.

Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak said last year the project was an ‘innovative’ way to fight dengue after a lack of success in campaigns urging Malaysians to keep neighbourhoods free of stagnant water where mosquitoes can breed.

The number of dengue-linked deaths in Malaysia increased by 52 per cent last year from 88 deaths in 2009. The total dengue infections rose 11 per cent from 2009 to more than 46,000 cases last year.

Dengue fever is common in Asia and Latin America. Symptoms include high fever, joint pains and nausea, but in severe cases, it can lead to internal bleeding, circulatory shutdown and death. There is no known cure or vaccine.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1350708/Genetically-modified-mosquitoes-released-Malaysia-sparks-fears-uncontrollable-new-species.html#ixzz1Cdu0H400

The Buzz on West Nile

Thursday, July 15th, 2010

You may have heard people talking or seen news reports about West Nile, a virus that is spread by the bite of an infected mosquito. In areas where the West Nile Virus has been found, very few mosquitoes have it. It’s true that the virus can cause an infection in the brain, but the chances that you will get very sick from any one mosquito bite are re-e-e-ally low. But, you still want to protect yourself and pitch in to help cut down on the number of mosquitoes.

So What Should You Do?

Repel
You’ve gotta get out and get active! Just remember, when you go outside, apply some mosquito repellent to your skin. Repellents that contain DEET are the most effective, but make sure you rub them on according to the directions. A good rule of thumb from the experts is that kids should use mosquito repellents with less than 10% DEET. Get your parents to help you put it on your face so you don’t get it in your mouth or eyes. And wash your hands after you apply it.

To be on the safe side about using repellents, you and your parents should check out the latest from CDC on the West Nile Virus and the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) for more information.

Raise your protective barrier
Wear light-colored clothing so you can spot mosquitoes that might land on you, and long-sleeved shirts and pants to hide your skin from those pesky pests. Top it off with a hat. You can even spray your clothes with a mosquito repellent to keep them away. Ask your parents to help you spray all those hard-to-reach spots.

Check out your environment
While some mosquitoes lay their eggs in ponds and swamps, other mosquitoes like to leave their eggs in standing water, like water left in buckets and wading pools. Think about it…the fewer places mosquitoes can lay their eggs, the fewer mosquitoes there are! Help cut down the number of mosquitoes by checking around your home, yard, deck, or neighborhood for standing water. Empty flowerpot saucers and turn over buckets. If you have a birdbath, clean it at least once a week.

Play it safe
Many types of mosquitoes are “night flyers,” so you may be more likely to get bitten around sundown…or around sun-up, if you’re an early riser! So you don’t get bitten at these times, either head indoors around sundown, or be extra sure to cover up and use repellent.

Great info from the CDC

Alabama Mosquito Control Program