Oswego County Plans Aerial Spraying Saturday Evening

<p>A mosquito bites a human.  Image courtesy of the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.</p>
A mosquito bites a human. Image courtesy of the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Submitted by Oswego County

The Oswego County Health Department will conduct an aerial spray of the Toad Harbor Swamp on the north shore of Oneida Lake Saturday evening, Aug. 8. The aerial spray will begin after 6 p.m. and continue until the area has been treated.

The area includes about 10,000 acres in the Toad Harbor and Big Bay swamps north of Oneida Lake. Spraying will take place within these boundaries: U.S. Route 11 in Central Square to the west, NYS Route 49 to the north, the village of Constantia to the east, and the shoreline of Oneida Lake to the south. Spraying will not take place over the waters of Oneida Lake.

Dr. Dennis Norfleet, Public Health Director of the Oswego County Health Department, said that 11 pools of mosquitoes in this area have tested positive for Eastern equine encephalitis (EEE), a rare but serious virus that is spread by infected mosquitoes, since early July.

The Oswego County Health Department has received permission to conduct aerial spraying from the state Department of Environmental Conservation.

“The product Kontrol 30-30, which contains permethrin, will be applied in a very diluted form to help reduce the spread of EEE,” said Dr. Norfleet. “The county has hired Duflo Spray-Chemical Inc. from Lowville to conduct the aerial spraying. The procedure is approved by the state Health Department and the Department of Environmental Conservation and the pesticide is strictly applied following state and federal guidelines.”

Residents in the area should stay indoors and keep windows and doors closed for one hour after the spraying. Residents 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.

Dr. Norfleet said people should limit their outdoor activities around dawn and dusk, when mosquitoes are most active, wear long pants, long-sleeved shirts, shoes and socks when outdoors, and eliminate standing water around the home. An insect repellent containing DEET may be applied over clothing according to the label instructions.

For more information, call 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. Pesticide health and safety information is also available by calling the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Regional Office at 607-753-3095, or the National Pesticide Telecommunications Network at 1-800-858-7378.