OSWEGO COUNTY – The Oswego County Health Department reported today (Sept. 1), that the Eastern equine encephalitis virus (EEE) was detected in four mosquito samples in the Toad Harbor area. These samples were collected last week during routine testing conducted by the county and state health departments.
The county plans to conduct aerial spraying Friday evening, September 4 in the Big Bay/Toad Harbor Swamp area.
Oswego County Public Health Director Jiancheng Huang emphasizes that people in all areas of Oswego County need to continue to protect themselves against mosquitoes when they are outdoors.
“As we take advantage of the late summer weather for outdoor activities, please do not forget about mosquitoes,” said Huang. “While the overall numbers of mosquitoes are declining, we are still finding infected mosquitoes. As it is not possible to eliminate all mosquitoes, it is critical that we remain diligent with our personal protection measures until the first killing frost.”
These measures include applying a mosquito repellent containing DEET, Picaridin, or Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus to prevent mosquito bites.
People should also continue to limit their outdoor activities between dusk and dawn when mosquitoes are most active; wear long pants, long-sleeved shirts, shoes and socks when outdoors; and eliminate standing water around the home to reduce mosquito breeding sites.
Aerial spraying is a control measure to diminish mosquito populations which will help to reduce the risk of human infection from the EEE virus.
It will not eliminate all mosquitoes. Any remaining mosquitoes infected with the virus will continue to pose a risk to people.
The product Kontrol 30-30, which contains permethrin, will be applied in a diluted form.
The county has contracted with Duflo Spray-Chemical from Lowville to conduct the aerial spraying.
The procedure is approved by the state Health Department and the Department of Environmental Conservation.
“We have been working closely with Duflo Spray-Chemical to choose an optimal evening to conduct the aerial spraying,” Huang said. “Ideally, the aerial spray is most effective when it is applied during an evening with warmer temperatures, calm to light winds, and no precipitation.”
The area to be sprayed was previously sprayed in August and includes about 10,000 acres within these boundaries: east of U.S. Route 11 from Oneida River to Central Square, south of NYS Route 49 from Central Square, up to but not including the village of Constantia to the east; and north of the shoreline of Oneida Lake. Spraying will not take place over the waters of Oneida Lake.
Residents within the aerial spray boundaries will be notified of the aerial spraying by the Oswego County Hyper-Reach reverse 911 program.
If the spraying is postponed due to weather conditions, residents will be notified through the news media and information will be posted on the Oswego County Web site at www.oswegocounty.com
People in the target area should stay indoors and keep windows and doors closed for one hour after the spraying.
They are also advised to:
• Keep pets indoors.
• Close the vents on window air conditioners so that outside air doesn’t enter the home for one hour.
• Remove outdoor toys, outdoor furniture, and clothing from the clothesline. Items left outdoors should be washed thoroughly with soap and water before using.
• If you are driving through an area while spraying takes place, close your car windows and vents.
• Cover gardens, or rinse homegrown fruits and vegetables thoroughly before cooking or eating.
A copy of the pesticide label and MSDS including all warnings, and fact sheets about permethrin aerial spraying can be found on the Oswego County Web site at http://www.oswegocounty.com/health/index.html, or obtained by calling the Oswego County Health Department at 349-3564 or 1-800-596-3200, ext. 3564, weekdays between 8:30 a.m. and 4 p.m.
After 4 p.m., call 341-0086.
For more information about EEE and other viruses transmitted by mosquitoes, contact the Oswego County Health Department or visit department’s website at http://www.oswegocounty.com/health/index.html