Bug battle begins anew
The skeeter struggle begins next week.
Monday, the Yuba-Sutter area will be fogged with insecticide, the Sutter-Yuba Mosquito & Vector Control District's early attempt to control potential West Nile virus carriers.
Mosquitoes transmit potentially fatal West Nile virus to people and animals via bites.
District Manager Ron McBride said traps and chicken flocks, which help indicate how the virus is spreading, are already out. The district has not yet located the virus in the Mid-Valley. But it is in California.
This year, 12 dead birds have tested positive for the virus, according to the Department of Health Services. West Nile has been located as close as Sacramento County, where two dead birds have tested positive.
Though the virus' arrival is a month behind last year's schedule, due to late rains, McBride said the district is still getting a jump on the pest problem. It's just the right time to do it, he added.
“Females are out getting their blood meal and laying eggs to keep the population going,” McBride said.
Truck-mounted spray machines will pass through rural areas and mosquito hotbeds every Monday and Thursday for two to three hours starting at sunset.
May 2, the district will start Tuesday evening aerial spraying agricultural areas west of Yuba City.
Areas north of Marysville will be sprayed Wednesday evenings.
A similar spraying routine helped reduce mosquitoes by 80 percent last year, McBride said.
Though the botanical-based insecticide poses a low risk to humans, some people may be sensitive, McBride said.
To avoid or minimize exposure, stay indoors, keep your windows closed and turn off evaporative coolers during spray time.
The district will stop spraying in autumn, once the mosquito population has dwindled.
For more information, call the district at 674-5456 Ext. 0 between 7 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.
Appeal-Democrat reporter Eve Hightower can be reached at 749-4724. You may e-mail her at email@example.com.