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  • Winnipeg Tribune

They're Back: Winnipeg launches mosquito control program

The City of Winnipeg launches its annual mosquito control program.
Winnipeg launches mosquito control program

By: Winnipeg Tribune Staff Writer

May 1, 2024 - City crews kickstarted the annual mosquito larviciding program early this morning, marking the onset of a proactive strategy to curb the mosquito population before it surges. This method, known as the most effective tactic, targets larvae during their aquatic stage, preventing their maturity into adult mosquitoes.

David Wade, Superintendent of Insect Control, noted the timeliness of the intervention. "With the snow melted and spring rains here, mosquito season has officially begun," Wade said. "Our focus is on those larvae already present in ditches and low-lying areas, aiming to manage their numbers early on."

This year, the city is committed to an environmentally considerate approach, employing a 100% biorational larviciding method. The plan includes the use of ground equipment complemented by four helicopters, ensuring comprehensive coverage of over 28,000 hectares of water areas. These efforts are adjusted continuously based on prevailing weather conditions.

In addition to larviciding, the city is also prepared to monitor and potentially treat adult mosquitoes. Monitoring starts with New Jersey Light Traps, with initial data from the traps available on May 8, 2024, on the Insect Control website. Treatment for adult mosquitoes will only proceed if it meets the stringent criteria set by City policy, the AFA Guidelines, and the Provincial Pesticide Use Permit.

Should the need arise, adult mosquito control will utilize DeltaGard 20EW®, targeting areas with significant mosquito activity while adhering to existing buffer zones. Public notifications will be issued 24 hours prior to any fogging operations, with ongoing updates about treatment locations provided daily.

Particular attention is given to the use of helicopters for larviciding, which is conducted under a special waiver from Transport Canada’s Civil Aviation Division allowing low altitude operations. Areas where people gather will be temporarily closed during treatments to ensure public safety.

Residents also play a crucial role in mosquito control. The city urges the community to eliminate potential mosquito breeding grounds by adhering to the #draindumpcover protocol, which includes draining, dumping, and covering stagnant water around homes.

For those seeking to establish a buffer zone around their property, applications can be submitted through various channels including an online service, email, fax, or in person, with a processing time of approximately 72 hours.

With these comprehensive measures, Winnipeg aims not only to manage the mosquito population effectively but also to minimize the environmental impact of its pest control practices, safeguarding both public health and ecological integrity.


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