Letter: Spraying alternatives

Dear Editor:

As research provides further information on the effects of pesticides and as new methods of pest control become available, it is important to adjust our pest control measures.  It is to their considerable credit that Coulter Aviation have volunteered to stop the aerial application of malathion and permethrins.  I hope the community expresses its appreciation.    

Aerial spraying with mosquito larvacides can be an important part of a larger mosquito control program.  That should be the next step for our towns and county:  adapt a general mosquito control plan.  As outlined by Rio Blanco County Health Director Julie Drake in her presentation to the Meeker Town Council last week, such a plan should include public education, eliminating mosquito breeding sites (e.g. old tires, bird baths, ponds, etc.) on your own property or treating them with larvicides such as Bti pellets, personal protection with appropriate clothing (e.g. long sleeves and trousers if mosquitoes are out), personal use of insect repellants (e.g. DEET) as necessary, and community-wide control measures including application of larvicides in standing water.   

Bob Dorsett, MD