The past decade has seen the rapid proliferation of mosquito control services in our community. These services typically consist of residual barrier treatments applied via backpack sprayers/foggers or automated misting systems installed in residential yards. Regardless of the delivery method, the pesticidal agents most commonly applied are pyrethroids, synthetic forms of botanical pyrethrin insecticides.

Pyrethroids, as a class, are the most widely-used insecticides for controlling mosquitoes nationwide. However, they do not discriminate between mosquitoes and non-target insects. Pyrethroids are highly toxic to bees and remain so for days after application. They also kill other beneficial invertebrates, including butterflies, moths, ladybugs, dragonflies, lightning bugs, beetles and spiders. In waterways, they are highly toxic to fish and other aquatic life. 

Pyrethroid insecticides commonly used in mosquito sprays carry this Federally-required Environmental Hazards caution.

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Pesticide Drift

Pesticide applicators are required to mitigate chemical drift. This means not spraying on windy days when chemicals can drift into non-target areas or neighboring properties. Residents who observe unwanted pesticide drift occurring in their yards can file a complaint with the Georgia Department of Agriculture’s Pesticide Complaints and Enforcement office’s Nancy Hall:  (404)-656-9371 or nancy.hall@agr.georgia.gov. Her office will send someone to collect samples and, if evidence of drift is found, issue a warning to the operator.

 

For more information, see: http://agr.georgia.gov/pesticides.aspx

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