A Season of Changes

September 16, 2014

With the past two years being so dry, and there being no flood water from spring run-off to contend with, it allowed us to isolate mosquito reproduction habitat primarily to irrigation water sources. This created an opportunity for us to focus on these areas with a larvaciding program to break the cycle of mosquito production here in the Animas Valley. 

The result!? The most effective abatement seasons and lowest mosquito counts ever experienced within the Animas Mosquito Control District (AMCD)! 

This season has presented a few changes for us. The Animas River crested very rapidly this spring, and then dropped just as quickly, leaving an enormous amount of “pooling” and “subbing” in low-lying areas. This provided ideal mosquito breeding habitat and it wasn’t long before our mosquito traps contiguous to these areas began to reflect it. Fortunately, we have a group of field technicians who really know the ground here in the district and they were able to get on top of the hatch very quickly.

Another change that affects our mosquito abatement effort is the recent purchase of property, by the City of Durango, now known as the Oxbow Park and Preserve. This area has long proven to be an “epicenter” of mosquito production here in the Animas Valley and with the new access limitations it has made it difficult to keep up with mosquito production in that critical area.

Also, the U.S. Forest Service contacted us this season and has significantly limited our access to the large slough up in the Falls Creek area of our district. These changes, along with the recent trend of expanding wetlands in many parts of the district, have created a season of changes for us as we endeavor to keep our community free from the threat of mosquito born disease and discomfort.

There has been much in the news about the high incidence of West Nile Virus showing up in the mosquito populations of Colorado this year and mosquito transmitted diseases, like Chickengunya and Dengue Fever, now present in the United States. You will be glad to know that none of the mosquitoes caught in our 15 traps throughout the district have tested positive for WNV! We have a great crew out there and they are doing a great job for our community! When your see them out in the field, let them know!

A Public Servant
Joe Kuefler
Manager of AMCD

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