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The original item was published from 7/17/2019 8:43:00 AM to 7/18/2019 3:32:15 PM.

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Posted on: July 17, 2019

[ARCHIVED] 07.17.19 Aerial Spraying Frequently Asked Questions

Aerial spraying to address the dangerous number of disease carrying Culex Mosquitoes will take place over Hutchinson and Reno County Tomorrow, Thursday, July 18th from 8:45 PM to 2:00 AM. (Between 10:00 PM and 2:00 AM over Hutchinson.) Below are the answers to come frequently asked questions about aerial spraying, its effectiveness, and safety.

Aerial Spraying and Mosquito Control

Is aerial spraying an effective tool for killing mosquitoes?

  • Aerial treatment of areas with products that rapidly reduce both adult mosquitoes and their larvae that carry the viruses can be effective

Is aerial spraying alone the best way to control mosquitoes?

  • Aerial spraying is only one part of the solution for controlling mosquitoes, but it is the one method that can rapidly reduce the number of mosquitoes in a large area.
    • It is the most effective method when large areas must be treated quickly.
  • Aerial spraying is used as part of an integrated mosquito control program to quickly reduce the number of mosquitoes responsible for infecting people with viruses like West Nile virus and other arboviruses.
  • An integrated mosquito control program includes
    • Source reduction. Eliminating mosquito habitats, such as discarded containers and rain gutters.
    • Structural barriers, such as screens and enclosed, air-conditioned spaces, if possible.
    • Larval mosquito control using the appropriate methods for the habitat.
    • Adult mosquito control using insecticides.
    • Community education efforts related to preventing mosquito bites by wearing EPA-registered insect repellents and protective clothing (long-sleeved shirts and long pants).

Aerial Spraying and Insecticides

Is aerial spraying experimental?

  • Aerial spraying is not experimental.
  • EPA-registered insecticides are used for aerial spraying. EPA-registered insecticides have been studied for their effectiveness and safety when used according to label instructions.
  • Aerial spraying, using Naled, has been used in many populated areas of the continental United States, including Miami, Tampa, and New Orleans, to help control mosquitoes.
    • In 2014, almost 6 million acres of land in Florida was aerial sprayed with Naled by mosquito control programs.

Where has Naled been used?

  • Naled has been extensively used since the 1950s and is currently applied by aerial and ground spraying to an average of approximately 16 million acres of the continental United States annually.
  • It is also used for mosquito control following natural disasters, such as hurricanes and floods.
  • Naled is currently used in the United States by many local governments and mosquito control districts to control mosquitoes that transmit diseases.

What happens to Naled once it is sprayed?

  • Naled starts to degrade (break down) immediately on surfaces, in water, and in sunlight.
  • The chemical dichlorvos (DDVP) can be created when Naled degrades. It also breaks down quickly.
  • In small quantities DDVP has not been shown to cause health problems in people.
  • DDVP does not build up in breast milk or breast tissue.

Aerial Spraying and Human Health

Is aerial spraying of insecticides dangerous/harmful to human health?

  • No, during aerial spraying, a small amount of insecticide is sprayed over an area, about 1 ounce (two tablespoons) per acre or about the size of a football field.
  • This small amount does not pose a health risk to people or pets in the area that is sprayed.
  • When aerial spraying is done correctly, it does not cause asthma attacks.
  • If people prefer to stay inside and close windows and doors when spraying takes place they can, but it is not necessary.

Does aerial spraying cause asthma attacks?

  • No, when aerial spraying is done correctly, it does not cause asthma attacks.
  • When applied according to label instructions, EPA-registered insecticides do not pose a risk to human health or the environment.
  • Research shows that ultra-low volume (ULV) application for mosquito control does not increase the risk of asthma for people living in treatment areas.

Will Naled cause cancer?

  • No, EPA has classified Naled as Group E “Evidence of Non-carcinogenicity for Humans,” meaning that there is no evidence that it causes cancer in people.
  • During aerial spraying, a small amount of insecticide is sprayed over an area, about 1 ounce (two tablespoons) per acre or about the size of a football field.
  • Droplets float in the air and kill adult mosquitoes on contact.
  • Naled starts to degrade (break down) immediately on surfaces, in water, and in sunlight.
  • Because of the very small amount of active ingredient released per acre of ground during aerial spraying, EPA found exposure was hundreds or thousands of times below an amount that might pose a health concern.

Aerial Spraying and Animals

Will aerial spraying hurt pets and other animals?

  • No, when aerial spraying is done correctly, it does not harm animals.
  • During aerial spraying, a small amount of insecticide is sprayed over an area, about 1 ounce (two tablespoons) per acre, or about the size of a football field.
  • This small amount does not pose a health risk to people or pets in the area that is sprayed.
  • EPA-registered products are used for aerial spraying. The label instructions are followed by a licensed professional. If people prefer to bring pets inside when spraying takes place they can, but it is not necessary.
  • Aerial spraying will not harm fish or animals that live in the water. People do not need to cover fishponds when spraying takes place.

Will aerial spraying kill bees?

  • Aerial spraying can be done in ways that minimize risk to bees.
  • Spraying Naled can kill bees outside of their hives at the time of spraying; therefore, spraying is limited to dawn or dusk when bees are inside their hives.
  • Because Naled breaks down quickly, it does not pose a risk to the honey bee populations.
  • Studies show that honey production between hives in treated and untreated sites did not show significantly different quantities of honey over the course of a season.
  • For additional protection, urban bee keepers inside the spray zone can cover their hives when spraying occurs.

Will aerial spraying kill birds or other animals?

  • No, when aerial spraying is done correctly, it does not harm birds or other animals.
  • The insecticides used for aerial spraying do not pose risks to wildlife or the environment.
  • Aerial spraying does not cause long-term harm to the environment or local ecosystem, even if spraying happens more than once.
  • Aerial spraying will not harm fish or animals that live in the water. People do not need to cover fish ponds when spraying takes place.

Aerial Spraying and the Environment

Will aerial spraying pollute water?

  • No, when aerial spraying is done correctly, it does not pollute water.
  • Research shows that, when applied according to label instructions, EPA-registered insecticides sprayed in low levels (about two tablespoons per acre [4,046 square meters]) does not cause long-term harm to the environment or local ecosystem, even if spraying happens more than once.

Will chemicals from aerial spraying contaminate soil?

  • No, when chemicals used in aerial spraying are used correctly, they will not contaminate soil.
  • Aerial spraying does not cause harm to the environment or local ecosystem, even if spraying happens more than once.
  • When applied according to label instructions, EPA-registered insecticides do not pose a risk to human health or the environment.

More information can be found on the US Environmental Protection Agency’s website.

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