Valdosta City Officials Initiate Mosquito Spraying Program

Valdosta city officials say they want to stay ahead of the game and protect folks from potentially life-threatening diseases.

Monday, the City of Valdosta will fire up a truck and begin its mosquito spraying program, and while its one of the latest start dates for this spraying program, managers say they've just been waiting for the right conditions.

Pete Pyrzenski, director of Valdosta Public Works, says, "I think it’s because of the cooler weather and the winds we've been having. Last year we had a wet spring and we had to start earlier, so we were able to postpone it by three weeks this year, but now I think it’s time."

Biologists say the city's spraying effort is a step in the right direction. They also say everyone needs to help out by checking their own property for possible mosquito breeding grounds.

Mark Blackmore, a VSU biologist, says, "If you've got containers, old kids swimming pools, anything like that gathers water when it sits for a while, make sure that those get turned over so you don't have standing water."

Both of the experts said if you're going to be outside you should utilize a third layer of defense, and that's wearing a bug spray that includes the chemical deet. They say it provides the best protection against being bitten by a mosquito, which could be carrying dangerous diseases.

Experts say the recent dry spell may cut down on the number of mosquitoes, but it may not be able to reduce the number of mosquito-borne illnesses like West Nile.