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FORT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – For the next two weeks, Broward Mosquito control workers will be spraying larvicide in neighborhoods in central Broward.
They are taking aim at mosquito larvae before they become adults and potentially carry deadly diseases.
“It is a very big concern for us,” said Anh Ton, Broward County’s Mosquito Control Director.
Ton wanted to reassure people that the spray wafting in the air won’t hurt people or pets.
“The larvicide is a natural and organic material,” he said. “(It) doesn’t harm the environment. Doesn’t hurt the pets. Doesn’t hurt human beings.”
Ton said mosquito larvae thrive in containers around people’s homes and grow in standing water and even containers as small as a bottle cap.
“Pool toys, yard drains, empty it out every couple of days because it takes a couple of days for them to become an adult mosquito,” Ton said.
Recent rains helped to create good conditions for the mosquito larvae to grow.
The big fear from the adult mosquito is diseases like Zika, yellow fever and dengue.
The Centers for Disease Control says they are seeing a spike in these types of diseases. In 2016, there were more than 40,000 cases of Zika, mostly in US territories, like Puerto Rico. For now, Ton is most worried about yellow fever due to outbreaks in South and Central America.
“The vaccine is highly effective but right now there’s a shortage right now of the vaccine,” he said. “I know the CDC is working very, very hard to increase production of that.”
Anh Ton told CBS 4 News that If you need help getting rid of standing water on your property, call Broward County and their mosquito control division will send someone to your home and even provide you the larvacide.
Visit Broward.org for more information.