Mosquito spraying set for tonight in Danville

June 23, 2004|LIZ MAPLES

After much buzz over mosquito spraying last year, Danville drew up a compromise: Spray adults when needed and use water-soluble pesticides to kill larvae.

The Department of Agriculture will spray throughout the city and at county convenience centers tonight, if it doesn't rain. If it is too wet tonight, the Ag Department will spray another day.

Kentucky sprays because somebody or several somebodies have complained.

It doesn't mean that there are an abundance of mosquitoes or any threat of West Nile Virus. In fact, Dr. John Poe, an epidemiologist with the state, says that as the years pass West Nile will likely become less and less of a problem.

In 2003, there were one-fifth of the cases than in 2002.

"It's not a major risk in Kentucky," Poe said. "Especially in Boyle County."

Low-lying westerly counties have more problems with standing water, and so more mosquito problems.

It's not that there is no risk from West Nile, but that there is very little.


Out of 100 mosquitoes, 1 percent will carry West Nile. If 100 people are bitten by mosquitoes with West Nile, 1 percent will get sick.

If the person is younger than 70 and in good health, it is likely he or she will survive. Some may not ever know they've contracted the disease.

In states where there are huge mosquito populations, there is monitoring. If there are a lot of mosquito pools that test positive for West Nile or other disease, then the area is sprayed. In Kentucky if someone complains to local officials, those officials can ask the Department of Agriculture to spray.

Last year several people complained to Danville City Commission about the spraying. They were concerned about the insecticide Dursban, which is being phased out by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

The spray, cholophyrifos, is the most widely used household pesticide produced in the United States and is used in agriculture, home and termite treatment. Sunlight breaks down the pesticide.

Danville decided to use larvicide this year. It ordered bricks of the insecticide from Clarke Mosquito Control, an Illinois company that City Manager Darrell Blenniss had worked with before.

Poe said the best ways to keep away from mosquitoes are to stay inside at dusk and dawn, wear insecticide and long sleeves, and eliminate mosquito breeding ground.

Residents who don't want their property sprayed or who have questions can call Tom Broach, director of codes, at 238-1200, ext. 2117.

Central Kentucky News Articles