Harris County Sprays for Mosquitoes

The Harris County Health Department will spray a large area of the county for mosquitoes, because of recent increases in the numbers of mosquitoes that carry West Nile Virus. Houston Public Radio's Jim Bell reports.

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The Health Department's Mosquito Control Division keeps mosquito traps all over the county, and more than 600 mosquitoes that carry West Nile Virus have been caught in recent days. Spokeswoman Sandy Kachur says that's too many, so they'll take to the air tonight and tomorrow night, to spray for mosquitoes in the northwest and northeast parts of the county.

"The proposed aerial spray operation plan is approximately 138 thousand acres that we're going to be spraying by air, and of course that's weather permitting. So this operation will impact approximately 22 different zip codes."

That takes in the Cypress and Spring areas to the northwest, and the Humble, Kingwood, and Atascocita areas on the northeast side. They use aerial spraying in those outlying areas because some places aren't accessible by road. And there's another reason.

"Doing aerial spraying would also free up some of our resources to do the inner loop, which is another large area of activity that we're seeing."

Sandy Kachur says they want people to know that it will be Health Department planes they will see flying around spraying insecticide at low altitude.

"So we just want people to be aware that it is mosquito control out there spraying and not to be concerned."

The mosquito spraying starts at 9pm and ends at 4am tonight and tomorrow night. Jim Bell, Houston Public Radio News.

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