Miami-Dade County Mosquito Control Division at the ready for the dengue virus
Staff takes year-round proactive measures to control mosquito populations, stands ready for arbovirus challenges
Given the recent report by the Florida Department of Health (FDOH) in Miami-Dade County about a locally-transmitted case of dengue, the Miami-Dade County Mosquito Control Division wants it known that it is prepared for any possible situation. From countywide and year-round mosquito surveillance, to home inspections and truck spray operations, Mosquito Control is ready for any challenges that might arise from mosquito-borne illnesses.
"Miami-Dade County’s Mosquito Control Division is operational throughout the year, meaning we are in a constant state of readiness, especially since the Zika challenge of 2016," says Mosquito Control Director Dr. William Petrie. "The vector mosquito for dengue is the same as for Zika – Aedes aegypti; therefore, the control methods remain the same. We are in constant contact with the FDOH and work closely with them, and follow a very specific and effective treatment protocol once we are alerted to any suspected or confirmed case."
A team of environmental technicians is busy checking the more than 180 mosquito traps spread throughout the County. Each trap is carefully examined on a weekly basis to determine the mosquito species collected, their numbers and gender. Select samples are sent away to State of Florida laboratories to find out whether the mosquitoes may be carrying a pathogen; they are screened for six different viruses. Learn more about Miami-Dade’s surveillance program here: bit.ly/MCSurveillance.
Mosquito Control has been conducting weekly mosquito larval treatment missions by truck in the areas where Zika was locally transmitted (Miami Beach, Wynwood, and Little River) since the summer of 2016. Beginning in June of each year, and to coincide with the increasing rains and peak mosquito activity season, the County expands its schedule to include heavily trafficked areas such as Little Haiti, Coral Gables, Brickell and South Miami. View the schedule and treatment areas here: bit.ly/MDCTruckSpray.
The division also has been conducting frequent adult mosquito spray missions, also by truck. These missions target areas where trap counts indicate a high concentration of mosquitoes, and when resident complaints also point to the same conclusion. There were approximately 50 of these types of treatments performed during the month of July alone.
Mosquito Control’s team of inspectors responds to individual mosquito inspection requests nearly seven days a week during this time of year, depending on the volume of the requests. The division processes about 100 service requests per day during the summer. Residents can request an inspection by calling 311, doing so online at bit.ly/MDCMCI, or downloading and submitting through the Miami-Dade County Department of Solid Waste mobile app for iPhone.
In addition, inspectors treat the 100,000+ storm drains throughout the County on a yearly basis, as part of the FDOH disease referral protocol and during typical service request calls.
For more information about the mosquito control program and additional tips, please visit www.miamidade.gov/mosquito.