PANAMA CITY BEACH-- Beach Mosquito Control District uses a lot of tools to battle mosquitoes, but one of the best ways they can do that is with an aerial attack! That's right, this helicopter is on the front lines in the battle against the biters.
"We do use the aircraft both for larviciding and adultciding we have to change the systems out but we put two tanks, they look like hip tanks on the side and that's the one I do in the daytime when I am flying over the water sources," Brad Gunn, a helicopter pilot for BMCD said.
Is the material being sprayed safe for humans?
"There's about 45 varieties of mosquitoes on the beach, we're only after the ones that carry diseases and annoy people. One of the entomologists actually picked up a little vial of this material and drank it. Now it doesn't taste like a chocolate milkshake, I can attest that, but he was just trying to show this stuff is very, uh, it's not harmful to humans."
Entomologist Mike Riles' job is to monitor the mosquitoes for several species of virus like West Nile.
"Measuring the presence of this virus enable us to be able to control the transmission rates of the virus. Once we can detect the virus we can go out and spray and control those mosquito vectors that are able to transmit the virus," Riles said.
As you can see, we can all be a part of the battle against those pesky mosquitoes. Beach mosquito control district has their tools, and I have mine.
They recommend that you empty any standing water around the outside of your home once a week to prevent mosquitoes from laying eggs.