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West Nile Virus and Aerial Spraying

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West Nile Virus and Aerial Spraying

Post  TexasTracy on Mon 13 Aug 2012 - 13:46

The county has declared a state of emergency in Dallas County because of the mosquitoes infected with W. Nile Virus. They are going to start aerial spraying different cities. What can I do to protect my SFG from the pesticide? Cover with plastic during night hours?

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Re: West Nile Virus and Aerial Spraying

Post  GloriaG on Tue 14 Aug 2012 - 8:19

Hi Tracy,

I'm concerned too. We're in Denton county so no areal spraying yet, but it might happen.

I suggest you don't cover with plastic. It's too hot even at night and the plants will suffer. Perhaps a floating row cover or sheet would stop most of the spray and shouldn't cause the same heat build-up underneath. Just be careful that you put it on the same side up each time so you don't accidentally transfer the insecticide to the plants from the sheet.

Honestly, I'm really concerned about the whole area. I know that Dallas is the epicenter of the West Nile mosquito threat in the US. But, I've seen a noticeable decline in the bee population recently and I'm afraid this won't be the only year that we have a West Nile problem. If mosquito control spraying becomes an annual event, I'm afraid we'll lose too many pollinators.


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Re: West Nile Virus and Aerial Spraying

Post  Lindacol on Tue 14 Aug 2012 - 9:08

What pesticide are they using? Knowing that would help in figuring out what to do.
I don't have any experience with this but think it would help to hose off your garden plants ASAP after the spraying.

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Re: West Nile Virus and Aerial Spraying

Post  GloriaG on Tue 14 Aug 2012 - 10:38

They are using synthetic pyrethroids

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Re: West Nile Virus and Aerial Spraying

Post  littlejo on Tue 14 Aug 2012 - 12:58

Down here in SC they used to spray, from a truck, on the ground in each county. Only areas that were the main breeding grounds for mosquitos, the spray was something to prevent eggs hatching and prevent breeding? It seemed to work, but the bad economy put it by the wayside.
West Nile has shown up here, they haven't decided what to do. The mosquitos are larger than I've ever seen. You will still get bit using that backwoods spray!
I have an idea that the spray that they used to use is not available anymore, it probably caused something, but, death from West Nile is bad too.
They may have to resort to aerial spraying here too.
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Re: West Nile Virus and Aerial Spraying

Post  TexasTracy on Tue 14 Aug 2012 - 19:31

I definitely feel the use of pesticides are a huge reason for the decline of bees and other beneficial insects. I've fought hard to keep my garden organic and I just don't think aerial spraying is good for the environment or for humans.

Gloria, I really didn't think plastic would be the best idea, thanks!

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Re: West Nile Virus and Aerial Spraying

Post  CindiLou on Wed 15 Aug 2012 - 16:38

Maybe you could rig up a tarp like an awning over the garden? No heat would build up and you can take is down in the morning?

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Re: West Nile Virus and Aerial Spraying

Post  camprn on Wed 15 Aug 2012 - 17:41

You may in fact not even be in a spray zone. Call and find out exactly where they are spraying. Your town may even have spray schedual online.

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Re: West Nile Virus and Aerial Spraying

Post  littlejo on Wed 15 Aug 2012 - 20:41

I found this article about the aerial spraying in Tx, Ma, and Ca. The diseases are scary, but found no mention of what the spray will do to us, our pets, or crops. Didn't find any info on SC.
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Re: West Nile Virus and Aerial Spraying

Post  CWJones on Thu 16 Aug 2012 - 11:21

The product they are using is DUET. Google it for MDS and application information. It has been around since the 80's and is considered safe (safe being relative) for use around people and pets. The local media should be posting application schedules. If they are not start aggitating until they do, I would. Yes, it will kill benificials also but if the spraying is limited to dusk and after hopefully the bees will be back in their hives. That being said, with 26 deaths so far nationwide and the epicenter of activity in that area the health officials are in a "damned if you do, damned if you don't" situation. I feel for you. The upside of the "exceptional" drought I'm in is the mosquito and tick populations are low.

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Re: West Nile Virus and Aerial Spraying

Post  CapeCoddess on Thu 16 Aug 2012 - 12:07

This is what it says on our .gov website:

Mosquitoes in Six Southeastern Massachusetts Towns to Reduce Risk of EEE
Spraying to take place during evening hours on Monday, August 13

BOSTON — The Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH) today announced plans to conduct aerial spraying for mosquitoes in Bridgewater, Easton, Norton, Raynham, Taunton, and West Bridgewater on Monday, August 13. Spraying will take place from 7:45 p.m. until 2:30 a.m. the next morning. Aerial spraying is heavily dependent on weather conditions, and spraying can be postponed up to the last minute — so residents are urged to check the DPH website at www.mass.gov/dph for the latest updates.

Click here for a searchable spray map.

Watch a YouTube video in American Sign Language: www.youtube.com/watch?v=CDI_runJYXc

Residents of these communities should take simple precautions to avoid exposure to pesticide during the time that their city or town is scheduled to be sprayed:

Stay indoors, keep your windows closed, and turn off window fans during the time spraying occurs. If your air conditioner has a fresh air intake feature, you may want to shut off the intake during the time of spraying.
Keep pets indoors when spraying is occurring in your immediate area to minimize their risk of exposure.
If skin or clothes or other items are exposed to the sprayed pesticide, wash with soap and water.
If the spray gets in your eyes, immediately rinse them with water or eye drops, and call your doctor.
If you have a small ornamental fish pond, you may want to cover it during the night of spraying.
Following the aerial spray, rinse any homegrown fruits and vegetables with water.

Aerial spraying of pesticides reduces but does not eliminate the risk of mosquito-borne illness. All residents, whether inside or outside the spray zone, are urged to continue taking personal precautions to avoid mosquito bites. These include using insect repellent, covering exposed skin when outside, and avoiding outdoor activities between the hours of dusk and dawn, when mosquitoes are at their most active.

Officials decided to conduct aerial spraying in the six towns following the recent detection of numerous additional EEE-positive mosquito pools collected from sites in Easton and surrounding communities.

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Re: West Nile Virus and Aerial Spraying

Post  littlejo on Thu 16 Aug 2012 - 12:28

I just checked in on this thread, and I forgot to put the link in my last post. There is a lot of info available, but have found nothing concerning whether toxic to plants or what to do about the crops affected.
http://www.cidrap.umn.edu/cidrap/content/other/wnv/news/aug1312spraying2.html
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Re: West Nile Virus and Aerial Spraying

Post  littlejo on Fri 17 Aug 2012 - 13:21

It was on the news that the spraying has begun. How many days will it take? Let us know how it went, and if you think it helped. I hope the gardens are ok. It seems that immediate human protection is more important than the long term health risks.
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Re: West Nile Virus and Aerial Spraying

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