aerial spraying for mosquitoes

Discussion in 'Local Government and Groups' started by Jim Tucker, Aug 23, 2011.

  1. Jim Tucker

    Jim Tucker Beach Fanatic

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    Does Walton do this?

    The Panama City Beach Mosquito Control helicopter will be performing an aerial mosquito spray mission tonight beginning at 7:30, according to a news release. The mission will cover parts of the beaches area from the Hathaway Bridge to Lake Powell, according to the release.
     
  2. Bob Hudson

    Bob Hudson Beach Fanatic

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    As a operational policy we do not do aerial spraying. There are certain circumstances by which we could conduct aerial spraying. It is my understanding that this has been done only once since the district was created in 1964.

    If landing counts were above a certain level and our ULV truck spraying did not reduce the landing counts below a bottom threshold then we could legally spray if our sentinel birds were testing positive for certain diseases.

    There are many reasons why we do not do aerial spraying here to include environmental concerns for sensitive areas such as our coastal dune lakes.

    The State Department of Health could also require us to spray if cases of certain mosquito born diseases were reported in our area.

    Note to Skunky: We have brought out the good stuff ! We are now using Evoleur(tm) as our adulticide.

    This product is effective in high temperatures, has quick knockdown characteristics, is low odor, is a non-
    corrosive Synergized Synthetic Pyrethroid for Control of Adult Mosquitoes, Biting and Non-
    Biting Midges, and Black flies.
     
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2011
  3. Jdarg

    Jdarg SoWal Expert

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    I had the misfortune of being at a concert at Pier Park on a spray night. Little beads of spray fell on us- an in our eyes and mouth- yuck! It was terrible in the eyes. They flew right over the crowd- we couldn't believe it. I am glad we are not using this in Walton County- can't be good for us or the lakes!
     
  4. Bob Hudson

    Bob Hudson Beach Fanatic

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    Aerial spraying dispenses droplets between 50-100 microns in diameter while truck non-thermal ULV (what SWMCD uses) droplet sizes are from 5-20 microns in size depending on speed the vehicle is traveling (slower speed smaller droplet size).

    If your were standing under a rotary wing helicopter flying at 120-175 feet above ground level (recommended altitude) you would definitely get "fogged".

    Another reason you don't want to do aerial spraying in a "tourist" area.
     
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2011
  5. Em

    Em Beach Fanatic

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    Bob, if that is true that about your reasons for not spraying via aerial, why is it that I saw a guy from Mosquito Control spraying the drainage ditch only 50 meters away from McQuage Bayou, where the water flows freely into that Bayou and into the Bay, then to the Gulf? The water is not stagnant in that ditch he was spraying. That doesn't seem so environmentally conscience to me, but those water bodies are just as important as the coastal dune lakes.
     
  6. Bob Hudson

    Bob Hudson Beach Fanatic

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    We are discussing two different products used for two different issues. If we were spraying one of our 46 mosquito control ditches - he was spraying a herbicide for control of vegetation in the ditch to keep water flowing. If the ditches are allowed to become overgrown with vegetation the plants catch debris floating in the water and cause the formation of pools.

    Aerial spraying is utilized to disperse a adulticide which is not supposed to be dispersed over lakes and streams without water quality testing to monitor potential damage to aquatic life. Spraying by truck allows for a more selective application within proximity to water.

    For vegetation we utilize the product described below.

    Glyfos Aquatic brand of glyphosate is a broad spectrum, non-selective, post-emergent herbicide for use in aquatic and other non-crop sites. Applied to actively growing partially or fully emerged plants prior to seed head formation, Glyfos Aquatic provides effective control of more than 190 species of herbaceous and woody plants.

    Glyfos Aquatic is one of the few herbicides available for use in highly sensitive, protected areas such as habitat restoration sites and protected wetlands including the Everglades. Glyfos Aquatic can also be used in non-crop aquatic sites such as golf courses, parks, retention ponds and wastewater treatment facilities.
     
  7. Em

    Em Beach Fanatic

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    I get that herbicide thing, but it seems to me that the grass filters the heavy metals and oil pollution from the run-off from the adjacent road. Those grasses are vital for filtration, yet the mosquito control overlooks that issue all together. AND, those herbacides go directly into the bayou and bay. Seems very narrow-minded to me.
     
  8. Bob Hudson

    Bob Hudson Beach Fanatic

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    I think it is a quantum leap to make the statement that we overlook the filtration issue. We take the best practices utilized to keep those ditches flowing. Without them making a very significant contribution to source control this area would return to the era when the County bird for Walton County was the mosquito.

    Those ditches and their efficient operation reduce the source for breeding areas by about 60 % thereby reducing the use of chemicals by a proportionate amount.

    As a realtor surely you understand the issue as it was in the State and Walton county prior to the orgnization of the mosquito control program. This area was almost uninhabitable and very open to disease transmission.

    As a commissioner I try to listen to best practices offered and temper decisions with common sense.

    I have a keen awareness of environmental concerns and try to minimize the use of chemicals.
     
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2011
  9. Em

    Em Beach Fanatic

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    Thanks for your reply, Bob, but it's not a quantum leap to talk about how our roads drain into the bayous and bay. That is vital to the life of our water systems and spraying herbicides directly into those ditches is terrible. The longer time the ground and plants have to filter out the water, the better it is for the health of the bayous and bays. Why do you think that storm water plans are addressed in development plans?

    So, mosquito control and the real health of our waters are pitched against each other in this on-going battle.
     
  10. Bob Hudson

    Bob Hudson Beach Fanatic

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    Murray

    We only have 46 ditches and they are not used for surface runoff from the county and state roads and their ditches. We are a part of the technical review portion of development plans and have an contract engineer that comments on potential adverse affects on our mosquito ditches, just ask Walmart.

    The quantum leap comment was in reference to the statement that we "overlooked the issue all together" which is not factual.

    Yes I guess at times the two issues are pitted against each other.

    Our use of herbicides is controlled by both the EPA and the Florida DEP and the product we use is approved for the purpose of vegetation control in environmentally sensitive areas.
     
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2011
  11. florida girl

    florida girl Beach Fanatic

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    The aerial spraying was done by the state for many years for Dog Flies, until our esteemed leaders succumbed to the pressure by those who compared it to Hitler's gas, a couple of years ago. As Vernon Bishop said, he's in his 90's and was a founding father and director of the SWMC, he used to stand in the direct path of the spray to determine whether it was the right consistency. The spray is and was formulated for specific pests and is and was a vital part of our survival in South Walton. At one time there was a population surge, then a bad hurricane caused a mass exodus. It has grown by leaps and bounds particularly since the efforts of our SWMC have paid off. Yes, ditches were dug to drain off low lands, roads were a by product of them. Without those ditches South Walton would mostly be uninhabitable.
    At one time, the county and the SWMC had a good working relationship concerning ditches, but it seems in the recent times, this relationship has dissipated, as evidenced by the building of JD Miller Road, and the removal of strategic ditches.
     
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2011

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