Mosquito Control Program

The Environmental Health Division, through its Integrated Mosquito Management Program, implements mosquito control activities.  The program focuses on mosquito trapping and testing, public education, reduction, and abatement of standing water.  

Following the City mosquito control policy based on scientific surveillance approach, only areas that test positive for West Nile Virus in mosquito traps are sprayed.  It is important to consider that spraying exclusively based on complaints may lead to pesticide resistance in mosquitoes, hence making spraying ineffective.  Therefore, the need for spray is less driven by complaints and more based on teh scientific surveillance results.  

However, high mosquito activity in some areas could be due to any standing water source, such as tires, any container or ornamental pots with water or bird baths, swimming pools with stagnant water, etcetera.  

Increased rain escalates the number of nuisance mosquitoes, known as "flood mosquitoes." This species does not typically carry the West Nile Virus.  As species responsible for carrying West Nile Virus normally breed in stagnant water. Mosquito traps are placed around the community to monitor the mosquito population.  Weekly tests for West Nile Virus begin May 1.  Staff will stay in contact with the Dallas County health officials to monitor regional conditions, adjusting response activities if conditions warrant.  

Mosquitoes can transmit viruses such as West Nile, Chikungunya, Dengue and Zika.  Fore more information regarding mosquito prevention, visit the CDC and Dallas County website.  

The most effective method of controlling mosquitoes is to eliminate any habitat in which they would thrive or be attracted to.  While the city continues to treat limited common areas, the greatest preventative impact comes from measures taken by each property owner to control mosquitoes around their home.  

Precautions


 Most effective way to avoid any mosquito-borne illness is to take the following simple precautions around the home.  Follow the "Five D's

1. DRAIN standing water in your backyard and neighborhood; old tires, flower pots and clogged rain gutters are mosquito breeding sites.  Change out pet water and bird baths daily and keep swimming pools treated.  
2. DEET - Apply insect repellent that contains DEET (N, N-diethyl-m-toluamide).  Be sure to read label instructions.  Spray clothing with repellent as well as exposed skin.  
3. DRESS in light colored long sleeves and long pants when you are outside.  
4. DUSK and DAWN is when mosquitoes are most active.  Stay indoors or minimize outdoor activities.   
5. DOORS and windows should remains closed and screens kept in good repair to prevent mosquitoes from entering your home.  

To report areas of stagnant water, or for additional inquiries, please call the Environmental Health Division at 972-919-2539.  

Mosquito Spraying 


What is in the spray and how does it kill the mosquitoes?

The chemical that is used to kill mosquitoes is permethrin, which is a safe EPA approved insecticide in the pyrethroid family. Pyrethroids are synthetically manufactured chemicals that are made to act like the natural insecticide extracts found in the chrysanthemum flower. This chemical is atomized into micro-fine droplets which stay suspended in the air so they can come in contact with active adult mosquitoes and kill them by interfering with their nervous system. The tiny droplets rapidly breakdown leaving little to no residual at ground level. For the spraying to be effective weather conditions must be ideal with no wind gusting or blowing over 10 miles an hour, air temperatures must be above 50 degrees F., and no rain or the chemical will not stay suspended in the air and will be ineffective.

How does the City determine the need for spraying?

Night time spraying specifically focuses on the mosquito species that can potentially transmit West Nile and the need for spraying is prioritized through scientific surveillance methods such as high mosquito trap counts, positive human cases, and mosquito pools that test positive for disease. The need to spray is less driven by mosquito complaints and mosquito spraying requests, although spraying can be utilized to knock down high populations of nuisance mosquitoes. It is important to remember though, that over-spraying based solely on complaints can over-expose mosquitoes to the pesticide currently in use and may result in the local mosquito population becoming pesticide resistant making spraying ineffective.

How do I find out what areas in the City will be sprayed?

Information will be shared on the website or you can call 972.919.2597 for more information.  

What precautions should I take at home when my area is sprayed?


Bring in pet dishes or cover them.
Cover aquatic ponds, fish ponds, and birdbaths.
Bring your pets inside for the night.
Do not go outside during spray times.
If you have health problems, such as asthma, take special precautions as directed by your doctor, if necessary.

What if I don't want my property sprayed?

The City will try to do everything possible to accommodate individuals who, for varying reasons prefer their property not be sprayed. For those who do not wish to have their property sprayed you can email or call the Sustainability & Public Health Department at 972.919.2597.

The following links are good resources on mosquitoes and mosquito control:

CDC FAQs Mosquito Control
http://www.cdc.gov/westnile/faq/mosquitoControl.html

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