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Should Mosquitoes Be Controlled Through Spraying?

POLL: One Wildwood resident told city council members he was appalled at what occurred last week, even though it represents a long-standing St. Louis County Health Department practice. Join the resulting survey.

Because was founded on preserving the environment, local resident David Schneider attended Monday night's city council meeting to ask why "dangerous chemicals" were being sprayed in Wildwood to control mosquitoes. He said he has experienced "multiple assaults of chemical sprays" at his Garden Valley subdivision residence.

"I found out there are no regulations about chemical sprays for private residences in Wildwood. Isn't that completely insane?" he said during the public participation portion of the meeting.

As reported by Eureka-Wildwood Patch on Aug. 9, county vector control representatives said because they carry the highest amounts of West Nile virus in the early fall. Historically, the rate of the disease increases in late August to early September.

The county vector control assistant interviewed for that article mentioned that Wildwood would be sprayed that week. See previous article: 

But Schneider voiced Monday that not all Wildwood residents would agree with spraying, and that without being notified about the spraying, they have no way to voice concerns.

In Schneider's case, he was out walking with his dog when the county's mosquito spraying surprised him. "Those sprays have dangerous chemicals and other noxious materials not appropriate to be inhaled by humans, pets or children," he said. "Just ask yourself if you'd want to be exposed to them."

He implored to council members to aggressively pursue regulations for the use of pesticides and insecticides, citing that county-governed sprays were being placed on homes of half-acre lots, which he believed was a bit overstretching.

City council member Tammy Shea, Ward 3, said she agreed with Schneider about curbing sprays because, based on her research, "sprays were not found to be terribly effective on mosquitoes anyway." She also agreed about the health concerns presented.

Wildwood director of public works Ryan Thomas said county officials long have sprayed and collected insect specimens here, billing municipalities for those services. He thought cities, such as Wildwood, are reimbursing St. Louis County for mosquito control for a total of $5,000 to $10,000 per year.

Wildwood city staffers said they would look into the county's program.

Gina Veesaert August 17, 2012 at 01:00 AM
I hope this isn't going to be another case of "we all suffer because the minority freaked out." If you're older than 25, chances are you grew up being sprayed for mosquitoes every summer. If you're healthy enough to be complaining about it now, you're probably okay. If you're that concerned, move to California. I hear it's so "clean" there, you can eat off the ground. (Sigh with an eye roll.) I'm more concerned with what changed in our local water a year ago that has the cat's water bowl growing pink stuff around the edges after two days. Now that's something to worry about.
River Divine September 10, 2013 at 05:49 PM
It is encouraging to know that there is at least one citizen in this community that is intelligent enough to know how incredibly toxic/dangerous mosquito spraying is for human health and the larger ecosystem, and cares enough about other people, pets, and wildlife in the community to speak up about it. Wish there were more smart people like him running the EPA, and actually protecting consumers from poisons such as this. Pesticides/insecticides are neurotoxins- directly linked to the development of diseases such as Parkinson's, MS, autism, ADHD, etc. They also initiate the development of hormonally-based cancers, such as breast and prostate cancer. In addition, they screw up the natural balance of our ecosystem- killing bees (our pollinators); killing dragonflies, poisoning birds and bats (the ones that actually GET RID OF mosquitos, killing fish that are unfortunate enough to be in water that has spray runoff, and polluting our shared groundwater.

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