Health Department to Apply Non-Chemical Aerial Treatment to Reduce the Number of Mosquitoes and Minimize the Risk of West Nile Virus

No human cases of West Nile virus have been reported this season

July 2, 2015 – To help control mosquitoes, the Health Department will apply larvicide by helicopter to marsh and other non-residential areas of Staten Island, Queens and the Bronx on Tuesday, July 7, Wednesday, July 8 and Thursday, July 9 between the hours of 6 a.m. and 7 p.m., weather permitting. In case of bad weather, application will be delayed until Wednesday, July 8, Thursday, July 9 and Friday, July 10 during the same hours. While three days are allotted for this activity, the application may be completed in less time. No human cases of West Nile virus have been reported this season.

The areas to be treated appear below. These are marshy, natural areas, which are common breeding grounds for mosquitoes. Due to their size and inaccessibility by ground vehicles, these areas will be treated with larvicide from a low-flying helicopter.

During warm weather, mosquitoes can breed in any still water that stands for more than four days. The most effective way to control mosquitoes is to eliminate standing water. New Yorkers are also encouraged to mosquito-proof their homes and take precautions when spending time outdoors.

The Health Department monitors for West Nile virus and applies pesticides as appropriate throughout the summer months. We have found high mosquito populations in the marsh areas of the city, which could grow due to hot and wet weather conditions.

We will be using naturally occurring and environmentally friendly larvicides to kill the immature mosquitoes before they emerge into adults. VectoBac™ GS, VectoMax™ FG and/or VectoLex™ FG – all containing naturally occurring bacteria  will be used for this application. These larvicides are used throughout the mosquito season to treat mosquito-breeding sites. These products are approved by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation.

Reducing Exposure to Mosquitoes

 Use an approved insect repellent containing picaridin, DEET, oil of lemon eucalyptus (not for children under three), or products that contain the active ingredient IR3535.

 Make sure windows have screens and repair or replace screens that have tears or holes.

 Eliminate any standing water from your property and dispose of containers that can collect water. Standing water is a violation of the New York City Health Code.

 Make sure roof gutters are clean and draining properly.

 Clean and chlorinate swimming pools, outdoor saunas and hot tubs. Keep them empty or covered if not in use; drain water that collects in pool covers.

 Report standing water by calling 311 or visiting nyc.gov/health/wnv.

 

See attached file for maps and additional information.