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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – In response to numerous calls and high counts in traps, Miami-Dade conducted another overnight spraying for pesky mosquitoes.
Just after midnight a plane took off and sprayed sections of Homestead, Florida City, the Redlands, West Kendall, Cutler Bay, Palmetto Bay, Pinecrest, South Miami, Coral Gables, and Miami – nearly 80-thousand acres in total.
The goal was to reduce the number of black salt marsh mosquito (Aedes taeniorhynchus), a nuisance mosquito known as an aggressive biter, but not considered a disease-carrier of major concern.
The pesticide used was Dibrom (also known as Naled), which is registered for use by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the State of Florida. When used in small amounts, they say it does not pose a health risk to people or pets.
“We have been using Naled for decades. The amount that would fit in a tiny Cuban coffee cup is the amount we use per acre, it disperses into very tiny droplets, basically a fine mist. Once it’s sprayed out, it gets the mosquitoes and then breaks down very quickly in the environment,” said Frank Calderone with the county’s Solid Waste Management department.
Last year’s use of Naled to eradicate Aedes Aegypti mosquitoes, which spread the Zika virus, was met with some resistance. In Puerto Rico, officials refused to use the chemical over health concerns.
Florida Health officials said there is no proof that contact with Naled can cause cancer in humans.
Viviana Acevedo knows the importance of keeping the pests away. She contracted Zika in Colombia and had to deal with fever and a rash.
“There was pain in my body, it was very hard,” she said.
Broward’s Mosquito Control also conducted an aerial spraying over Weston early Monday for nuisance mosquitoes usually associated with heavy rains during the summer months, and not those carrying the Zika virus.