Utah County mosquito abatement steps up efforts to wipe out mosquitoes

Posted at 6:43 PM, Jun 07, 2016
and last updated 2016-06-07 20:43:58-04

UTAH COUNTY – Warmer weather means mosquitoes are out in full force. The past couple of weeks they’ve been keeping mosquito abatement crews busy.

While there’s growing concern around the world about the Zika Virus, crews in Utah County are keeping an eye out for the West Nile Virus.

“We’ve got quite a few calls in several of the areas throughout the valley,” said Robert Mower, Utah County Mosquito Abatement manager.

It’s busy season for Mower and his crew. Mosquitoes are cropping up now that temperatures are rising.

“In conjunction with that, the first crop of hay has been cut and the hay harbors a lot of mosquitoes,” Mower said.

Each morning, crews set up traps to see what’s flying.

“We put about two pounds of dry ice in it and as that evaporates the carbon dioxide is what attracts the mosquitoes,” Mower said.

This month, crews will cover a lot of ground to wipe out mosquitoes before they’re tougher to control.

“Up to this point, most of our control has been treating water, stagnant water that are producing the mosquitoes, when we find the larvae and that’s the best way to control them,” Mower said.

Another device at their disposal is a machine that sprays for mosquitoes in affected areas.

Crews will also spray by air once they determine how many and what types of mosquitoes they’re seeing.

But even with all these resources, Mower says they can’t do it alone.

“This is an abatement not an extinction program we’re running, those mosquitoes have been successful for millions of years,” he said. “We’ll slow them down as much as we can, but we’re not going to destroy them.”