A mosquito carrying the West Nile Virus was found in Berthoud and confirmed by Larimer County on June 26. When West Nile mosquitoes are found in the Longmont area (the three county region of Boulder, Larimer and Weld) and local mosquito traps exceed 100 adult mosquitoes, the City will begin spraying in specific predetermined areas to help control the threat. It is very likely that Longmont’s mosquito control contractor will be spraying on the evening of July 6 based on trap counts. To date, mosquitoes numbers are at an all-time high (Aedes Species, floodwater) in number, however the Culex species (which carries the West Nile Virus) are at an annual average.
Trapping started in Longmont on June 1 and takes place every Sunday evening throughout the summer. The City has 16 traps located throughout the City to get representative sampling.
The schedule looks like this:
- Trapping on Sunday evenings – See weekly trap reports from Vector Disease Control International
- Spray notification in the Longmont Times-Call newspaper and the City’s website on Tuesday mornings
- Actual Spraying on Thursday evening (weather permitting)
The City of Longmont has contracted with Vector Disease Control International (VDCI) to implement an “integrated pest management program” to combat mosquitoes that might carry the West Nile Virus. This program focuses on first attacking mosquitoes in their larval stage before they become airborne. This is the best method since it eliminates mosquitoes before they hatch. This method also minimizes fogging to kill the adult, airborne bugs. However, some localized spraying becomes necessary when the West Nile mosquito population increases where habitat and weather conditions increase their likelihood.
Longmont residents are encouraged to sign up for the City’s e-Notification system to receive updates and notices about West Nile virus and any scheduled spraying in the city. By visiting www.longmontcolorado.gov/online-services/e-notification-subscription residents can enter their contact information and receive an email notice if and when spraying is scheduled to occur.
The City has posted area maps on the West Nile information web page at LongmontColorado.gov/westnile that show the boundaries of 16 predetermined spray areas. When mosquito traps exceed the 100 count threshold and West Nile virus has been detected in the Longmont area, an alert will be sent to subscribers on Tuesdays, an ad is printed in the Times-Call, and notices are posted to the city’s social media sites. Spraying typically occurs on Thursday nights – giving residents 48 hours notice of any spraying.
VDCI uses state of the art technology, calibrated application timing, and least-toxic products to minimize non-target impacts. All adult mosquito control is accomplished using Ultra Low Volume (ULV) fogging equipment and is performed after dusk when the majority of mosquito species are most active.
WNV is transmitted to humans from the bite of an infected female mosquito. While most infections are mild, the more serious infections can cause encephalitis (inflammation of the brain) and/or meningitis (inflammation of the brain’s lining), loss of vision, paralysis, coma, tremors, convulsions, and death.
Symptoms of WNV include fever, extreme fatigue, headache, body aches, and occasionally can also include skin rashes and swollen lymph nodes. Generally, symptoms appear 3 to 14 days after being bitten by an infected mosquito. Anyone who experiences these symptoms should consult their health care providers.
There is no treatment, cure, or human vaccination for the virus. Health care providers can only treat the symptoms to help patients feel better and possibly recover more quickly.
Boulder County Public Health and Longmont officials urge residents to take necessary precautions to protect themselves. Keep safe this summer, and remember the 4Ds:
1. Use DEET-enhanced insect repellent or alternative.
2. DRESS in long sleeves and pants.
3. Avoid the outdoors from DUSK until DAWN.
4. DRAIN standing water outside your home.
Generally, the mosquito season extends from late April until mid-October, with the end usually signaled by the first freeze in the fall.
For more information about West Nile virus, mosquito activity in Boulder County, or proactive steps to take, visit http://www.bouldercounty.org/env/water/pages/wnv.aspx or call the Colorado Health Information Line at 1-877-462-2911. To report nuisance mosquitoes, click on “Mosquito Complaints” in the “What you Can Do” section on the website.
Call Notification & Shutoff Request from Vector Disease Control International – VDCI maintains a database of community residents who wish to have their property excluded from ULV fogging operations. There are three options, 1. Property Shutoff,
2. Property Shutoff with Call Notification of Spraying, or
3. Call Notification of Spraying Only. Please call VDCI at 877-276-4306 to make this request. Or fill out an online request form at www.vdci.net/Colorado#3. Or you can e-mail VDCI at firstname.lastname@example.org.
To report problem areas in your neighborhood or to be notified of the spraying schedule call VDCI at (970) 962-2582.
The Longmont Observer will periodically publish information, like this, from the City of Longmont website or other similar source that affects many or all of the people living in Longmont.