The City of Winnipeg is implementing changes to its mosquito control policy following a council vote in June to review how the city fights adult nuisance mosquitoes.
One of the recommendations council voted on was to reduce the time needed to notify the public before mosquito fogging begins. Based on the report put forward, the city’s Insect Control Branch will now only be required to provide 24 hours notice, as opposed to 48 hours. This change — approved by consultation with the province — will not take effect until the beginning of the 2011 season.
Another recommendation was to reduce the number of mosquitoes present in traps before fogging can commence. A reduction from three consecutive days of a citywide trap count of 25 female adult mosquitoes will still need to be studied further before it can be implemented. The Environmental Assessment and Licensing Branch has asked the city to provide more evidence to support this change.
The most heated issue surrounding the way the city fogs for mosquitoes are buffer zones. Currently set at 100-metres, the Insect Control Branch will perform field trials to better determine what a smaller buffer zone size should be without impinging on a resident’s wishes to have a pesticide-free property.
Recent rain in the Winnipeg area has increased the number of adult nuisance mosquitoes. If the trap count numbers continue to increase, the city will begin fogging once again.