Towns to decide on aerial mosquito spraying

Several towns in southern Denton County will decide this week if they want to participate in Denton County’s aerial mosquito spraying program to combat the deadly West Nile virus outbreak.

On Monday night the Bartonville Town Council met and voted to opt-out of aerial spraying for mosquitoes.

Copper Canyon Town Council voted 2-1 to participate in aerial spraying at a packed meeting on Monday evening.

The Highland Village City Council will address aerial spraying at their regular council meeting Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. at the municipal complex.

Argyle will also tackle the issue at their town council meeting on Tuesday evening at 5 p.m.

The meetings were prompted by Denton County’s declaration of a West Nile Virus Health Emergency last Wednesday.

The declaration triggered a request to the Department of State Health Services to make additional resources available to Denton County for aerial mosquito spraying.

Municipalities have a small window of time to take advantage of the opportunity to be included in the aerial spraying program funded by the state.

Of the area towns that have already addressed the issue, both Flower Mound and Double Oak opted to be included in the aerial spraying.

Aerial spraying will take place in Lantana since the master planned community is in an unincorporated area of Denton County.

Dr. Bing Burton, director of the Denton County Health Department, said aerial spraying is safe and should not present a risk to the public.

The chemical to be sprayed is called Duet, a combination of two pyrethroids; sumithrin and prallethrin. Pyrethroids are a class of synthetic pesticides similar to pyrethrins, which are naturally occurring in chrysanthemum flowers. They kill mosquitoes on contact and are usually broken down by sunlight and water in a short period of time after application. Aerial Spraying Q&A.

Burton told council members that he expects the aerial spraying operation to occur no sooner than this Thursday and Friday nights between 9 p.m. and 2 a.m., but the exact times have not been posted.

This year, 119 residents had been diagnosed with West Nile disease in Denton County as of Thursday, which is the highest West Nile virus incidence rate in the state.

“Aerial spraying is the most effective option,” Burton said last week. “I believe that is the best recommendation. We are dealing with an outbreak like we have never seen.”

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