News


West Nile mosquitoes found in Palo Alto

Ground fogging planned for Monday night to control mosquitoes carrying virus

Santa Clara County officials announced Wednesday that mosquitoes carrying West Nile virus were found in Palo Alto and Mountain View. The county's Vector Control District plans to carry out mosquito fogging on Monday, July 13, between 11 p.m. and 2 a.m., weather permitting.

"We want to get ahead of the spread of the virus," said Santa Clara County Vector Control District Manager Denise Bonilla in a statement released July 8. "So far this year there have not yet been any (West Nile virus) human cases reported in the county or the state, and our goal is to prevent infected mosquitoes from transmitting (it) to Santa Clara County residents."

The area targeted for ground fogging treatment includes parts of the 94043, 94303 and 94306 area codes, according to county officials. The area is centered on Louis Road and E. Meadow Drive, and is bordered to the north by the following streets: E. Meadow Drive, Loma Verde Avenue and Colorado Avenue; to the east by Bayshore Road and Terminal Boulevard; to the south by Charleston Road, Middlefield Road and Old Middlefield Way; and to the west by Middlefield Road, Cowper Street, South Court and Carson Court.

Bonilla said a technician assigned to the Palo Alto Baylands tests and treats for West Nile throughout the year.

The mosquitoes carrying West Nile are the species that is mostly found in industrial areas. They are not usually found in the high-salinity marshy area, she said.

Vector control detects the virus by the following methods:

When a dead bird is reported, they pick it up and test it for the disease. If the bird tests positive, they set out traps in a one-mile radius. The mosquitoes are batched for testing. If they test positive, then Vector Control draws another circle one mile out from the previous one-mile trapping area and they fog the total two miles.

Santa Clara County has had 23 birds test positive so far this year. The state has had 132 positive birds so far, she said.

Transmitted by mosquito bites, West Nile virus does not cause symptoms in most people, but in some it can cause fever, headache and body aches, and in severe cases, significant neurological damage or death, according to county officials. For more information, call 408-918-4770 or go to SCCvector.org.

Comments

6 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jul 9, 2015 at 9:43 am

Since this is close to the Baylands and there have been problems with mosquito invasion in the past, have the old problem areas, the dykes, the levees, etc. been checked?

Do we know if the discovery has been made from dead birds, or the traps on trees?

More information would be useful.

Thank you.


6 people like this
Posted by Mike Alexander
a resident of St. Claire Gardens
on Jul 9, 2015 at 10:45 am

Lots more information, about vector control in general, and about mosquito fogging in particular, on the County Vector Control web page: Web Link


4 people like this
Posted by Slow Down
a resident of Community Center
on Jul 9, 2015 at 11:30 am

Slow Down is a registered user.

@Resident - I've noticed a TON of mosquitos this summer, having a very hard time keeping them out of the house. But they are small, not those huge nasty swamp mosquitos from a couple years ago.


Like this comment
Posted by Curmudgeon
a resident of Downtown North
on Jul 9, 2015 at 1:06 pm

"I've noticed a TON of mosquitos this summer"

We're clean over here. There must be some open standing water in your area. It doesn't take much.


3 people like this
Posted by Sue Dremann, Staff Writer
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jul 9, 2015 at 2:30 pm

@Resident,


Santa Clara County Vector Control District Manager Denise Bonilla said the a technician assigned to the Baylands tests and treats for West Nile throughout the year.

The mosquitoes carrying West Nile are the species that is mostly found in industrial areas. They are not usually found in the high-salinity marshy area.

Vector control detects the virus by the following methods:

When a dead bird is reported, they pick it up and test it for the disease. If the bird tests positive, they set out traps in a one-mile radius. The mosquitoes are put in mosquito pools for testing. If they test positive, then Vector Control draws another circle one mile out from the previous one-mile trapping area and they fog the total two miles.

Santa Clara County has had 23 birds test positive so far this year. The state has had 132 positive birds so far.


6 people like this
Posted by Nora Charles
a resident of Stanford
on Jul 9, 2015 at 2:59 pm

I hope our friends the bats are working hard to help control the mosquito population!


5 people like this
Posted by Love bugs
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jul 9, 2015 at 4:03 pm

Does anyone know if this hurts our "good" bugs? I read bees are somewhat protected because they fog at night when bees are not out and about. But what about other bugs and birds?


5 people like this
Posted by Vanessa
a resident of College Terrace
on Jul 9, 2015 at 4:04 pm

Thanks for this information - and to Mike Alexander for the link to the county website. It's troubling that Vector Control is faced with having to make a call between the threats posed by WNV and the threats posed by the poison used to kill the mosquitos who may carry it. At risk are not only direct human and bird health but also the health of the bay. The EPA has this to say about the pesticide in question, etofenprox (Web Link):

This pesticide is toxic to aquatic organisms, including fish and aquatic invertebrates. Runoff
from treated areas or deposition into bodies of water may be hazardous to fish and other
aquatic organisms. Do not apply over bodies of water (lakes, rivers, permanent streams,
natural ponds, commercial fish ponds, swamps, marshes or estuaries), except when
necessary to target areas where adult mosquitoes are present, and weather conditions will
facilitate movement of applied material away from water in order to minimize incidental
deposition into the water body. Do not contaminate bodies of water when disposing of
equipment rinsate or washwasters.
This product is highly toxic to bees exposed to direct treatment on blooming crops or weeds.
Time applications to provide the maximum possible interval between treatment and the next
period of bee activity. Do not apply to blooming crops or weeds when bees are visiting the
treatment area, except when applications are made to prevent or control a threat to public
and/or animal health determined by a state, tribal, or local health or vector control agency on
the basis of documented evidence of disease-causing agents in vector mosquitoes or the
occurrence of mosquito-borne disease in animal or human populations, or if specifically
approved by the state or tribe during a natural disaster recovery effort.


Like this comment
Posted by Vivi
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 10, 2015 at 10:03 pm

The link below is helpful in showing the area to be fogged

Web Link

I ask these questions---how do we REALLY know that this pesticide and/or its residue won't harm other wildlife, pets, strays,foliage, wildlife, children out playing the next day, and so on??

Why hasn't there been a large and official notice of this action? Just a paragraph or so in local papers today, Friday, when there's only Monday in which to protest against this.

Outrageous lack of sufficient notification!


2 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jul 10, 2015 at 10:09 pm

I think there is plenty of outreach information about this. I received email from SC County, phone message and also a door hanger was left on my front door today. Not sure how much more outreach there could be.


Like this comment
Posted by Vivi
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 10, 2015 at 11:19 pm

@ Resident: "I think there is plenty of outreach information about this." That is reassuring, to know that you got notification.

But my other question remains: how do we REALLY know that this pesticide and/or its residue won't harm other wildlife, pets, strays,foliage, wildlife, children out playing the next day, and so on??

Did any/all of the notification you received answer this other question? Please let me know via this forum.


Like this comment
Posted by Google It
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jul 11, 2015 at 12:21 am

@Vivi,

You have all of the information - research the pesticide in question to find the information you want/need. Realistically, we won't know the actual impacts of this pesticide for many, many years, if ever. We face so many contaminants every day this is a drop in the bucket.

My family is planning to be elsewhere that night.


2 people like this
Posted by Common sense
a resident of Mountain View
on Jul 11, 2015 at 11:58 am

Vivi wrote: "how do we REALLY know that this pesticide and/or its residue won't harm other wildlife, pets, strays,foliage, wildlife, children out playing the next day, and so on??"

Some people will probably be content to remain uncertain and anxious (or, what's arguably worse, go online and find out-of-context alarmism and fear-mongering, which are great aids to stoking those anxieties without really addressing them).

But if you want to understand this topic in more of its reality and complexity, you could start by getting familiar with the pyrethrin insecticide class (basis of the agents now used, in very dilute form, in Santa Clara County). WP has a good broad article: Web Link This class of insecticides (whose history is ancient -- they were long extracted from Crysanthemum plants, which evolved them as an insect defense, but are now made much cheaper synthetically) has mostly replaced the completely-manmade organophosphorous insecticides used for much of the 20th century. The basic reason for that replacement is that the pyrethrins' toxicity is much more specific to insects -- not to birds, or mammals such as humans -- and moreover they biodegrade, and in commercial forms can be tweaked for fast breakdown in sunlight.

SCC Vector Control sprays these products in liquid form as a contact-acting insecticide (meaning it does NOT affect bees, since applied during night hours when bees aren't airborne). The biodegradation means they break down quickly and don't linger in the environment, and the extreme selectivity of the toxic action means they're not a significant issue for non-insect life forms (just as Crysanthemum plants aren't considered a major public-health hazard. :-)

Again, it is possible to Google no shortage of anxious notions, spins playing eagerly on ambiguities, etc. (I've done it). Anyone determined to stoke a preconception that this fogging will "harm other wildlife, pets, strays,foliage, wildlife, children out playing the next day, and so on" can easily do so.

But if you want to understand the real-world tradeoffs being made here between pro-active measures (remove standing water, introduce larva-eating fish to ponds), mosquito fogging, and no mosquito fogging (couple of hundred California WNV fatalities to date), it helps to start with dispassionate background information -- light, not heat.


3 people like this
Posted by Palo Alto resident about to be fogged
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jul 13, 2015 at 5:02 am

We grow food in our garden. We'll attempt to put tarps over it but with fogging, it seems that some pesticide will permeate.

How concerned do we need to be about eating this food? Of course we will wash it, but our grandchildren, who play in the yard, are too young to fully understand that they should not pick and eat delicious tomatoes (as firmly as we might instruct them).

We got a door hanger, but no email, no phone call, unlike many much more trivial situations.

I agree with the person above who is amazed that we were given so little time to educate ourselves and decide whether to protest. It can't be an accident that we are notified on Friday and fogged on Monday.


4 people like this
Posted by Common sense
a resident of Mountain View
on Jul 13, 2015 at 8:41 am

Palo Alto resident and others: This situation has happened many Summers in recent years (newspapers including this one had the story above by Wenesday). Usually they give this link, which has extremely helpful info and FAQs: Web Link

Regarding home gardens, I'd certainly wash any produce directly affected by fogging, if you are eating it the next day. But keep in mind that Etofenprox (the active pyrethroid here) breaks down rapidly in the environment; its half-life in air is around two hours, though it can persist longer in soil or water. (Automatic breakdown is one reason this class of pesticides is preferred today; the other is that its toxicity is extremely specific to insects, and it is inherently not much of a health hazard to humans or pets even in pure form. Much more background info in the WP link I posted above.) For these reasons Etofenprox is also commonly used as an agricultural pesticide with food crops.


Like this comment
Posted by doreeteebee
a resident of South of Midtown
on Jul 13, 2015 at 12:29 pm

Late to the game, here, I realize, but I am fuming over the fogging. I will be leaving my house for the next 2 days and when I return, will be detoxing everything. Here we are in Palo Alto, so aware of our environment and yet this blasphemy is occurring?


Like this comment
Posted by doreeteebee
a resident of South of Midtown
on Jul 13, 2015 at 12:35 pm

What the EPA deems safe today is the thalidomide of tomorrow. How are we letting this happen, I don't get it.


Like this comment
Posted by doreeteebee
a resident of South of Midtown
on Jul 13, 2015 at 12:46 pm

They are using a chemical that will be sprayed within 10 feet of your house specifically designed to kill something.


Like this comment
Posted by doreeteebee
a resident of South of Midtown
on Jul 13, 2015 at 12:53 pm

Not just sprayed but 'Fogged". A truck will be driving through the neighborhood, emitting a strong chemical blast that "should be safe".
Q. How does the fogging reach my back yard?
A. Once released from the fogging unit, the microscopic droplets follow the air currents wherever they go. Some will go over the house, and some will go around.

This is unbelievable, and we're worried about terrorist attacks?


Like this comment
Posted by doreeteebee
a resident of South of Midtown
on Jul 13, 2015 at 1:18 pm

There is no way to "opt out". The truck will blast your street. Not to mention those lovely air current transports. I am opting out by moving out for 2 days. My beautiful kumquat tree, my mint, my apple tree, how can they opt out? SOL.


5 people like this
Posted by Common sense
a resident of Mountain View
on Jul 13, 2015 at 1:25 pm

doreeteebee, rather than fuming (and venting endlessly here on Town Square), why not read up further on what is going on, and the class of agent in use (pyrethroids). I posted a couple of useful links earlier in the thread. The information is empowering, and you may discover there is less to be anxious about than you thought.

This type of insecticide is famous for low general toxicity, and unlike some things "the EPA deems safe today," it has a history of not just hundreds, but thousands of years of use around the world. Pyrethrins occur naturally in Crysanthemum plants (which are all around you all the time) and have been extracted commercially from those plants for centuries for insecticidal use. The specific pyrethroid used in the fogging is distributed in deliberately very dilute form, and begins breaking down immediatwly on exposure to air, with a half life of hours.


Like this comment
Posted by doreeteebee
a resident of South of Midtown
on Jul 13, 2015 at 1:34 pm

I am venting because there is a chemical warfare about to be release upon my neighborhood. Do you really think that it is only the mosquitos who will be murdered when the trucks begin their fogging?


1 person likes this
Posted by Common sense
a resident of Mountain View
on Jul 13, 2015 at 1:40 pm

doreeteebee, I don't "really think," I know -- because I actually did my homework, rather than rushing off cultivating a panic about something I knew absolutely zero about. But clearly, that is how some people always prefer to handle these situations.

(The consolation is that as long as they rely purely on emotion and ignorant anxiety, no responsible authority is going to take them seriously, and very rightly so. Their fuming ill-founded anger harms just themselves.)


1 person likes this
Posted by Margaret
a resident of Charleston Gardens
on Jul 13, 2015 at 1:42 pm

Unbelievable!

In a drought we should worry about mosquitos?

If we had Participatory Democracy the government wouldn't be allowed to poison the people and their pets this way.

What about the Towhees? Who will protect them?


5 people like this
Posted by Common sense
a resident of Mountain View
on Jul 13, 2015 at 1:47 pm

Margaret, no one is going to poison "the people and their pets." Pyrethrins are specifically used because they are NOT toxic to mammals.

If people would just read the basic tutorial info I linked in a couple of places earlier in these comments, they wouldn't cultivate these anxious misconceptions. But it seems some people cling to their anxieties rather than learn something about the subject that would put it into sober perspective. I guess they prefer being anxious to being empowered.


Like this comment
Posted by doreeteebee
a resident of South of Midtown
on Jul 13, 2015 at 1:48 pm

MY Common Sense tells me that a chemical designed to kill one species can't be good for other species. The mosquitos won't be the only ones crying tonight.


Like this comment
Posted by doreeteebee
a resident of South of Midtown
on Jul 13, 2015 at 1:55 pm

Some people just don't have any common sense, I guess. It's so sad that this is being allowed to happen here. Oh well, just go to Whole Foods and buy your organic veggies and fruits. It'll all be okay. Until it's not. Cough cough, wheeze wheeze.


Like this comment
Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jul 13, 2015 at 2:45 pm

I understand the concerns for something that may possibly have a very slight downside. On the other hand, I am pleased that we are being protected against West Nile which would be extremely bad if someone had it.


2 people like this
Posted by cancer
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 13, 2015 at 3:00 pm

Sleep well tonight.


Like this comment
Posted by curmudgeono
a resident of Downtown North
on Jul 13, 2015 at 3:00 pm

"If we had Participatory Democracy the government wouldn't be allowed to poison the people and their pets this way."

The government would be ORDERED to poison the people and their pets this way in a Participatory Democracy if the West Nile paranoids steamroll the Pesticide paranoids.


Like this comment
Posted by Naturalist
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 13, 2015 at 4:29 pm

It was stated earlier that the chemical is safe for mammals. What about birds that nest near the creeks and the animals in the creeks. Frogs, etc?


2 people like this
Posted by Common sense
a resident of Mountain View
on Jul 13, 2015 at 4:53 pm

Naturalist: To repeat what I posted earlier above, anyone can read general background about pyrethrins Web Link . Vector Control also has good broad information in its standing FAQ page (this topic comes up every year when disease-vector mosquitos are found): Web Link .

I have been reading about pyrethrins for 40 or 50 years, originally in an 1800s book about pest control (at that time, these pesticides were produced commercially from Crysanthemum plants, where they naturally occur; they are an example of a larger group of natural chemicals that plants evolve to defend from insect attack). For many years, pyrethrins were considered the gold standard for insect control because they are so extremely selective (they are also toxic to fish however, so Vector Control is obliged to avoid fogging around significant live water ecosystems). But they were not used much, because they were still extracted from plants like Crysanthemum, and were therefore relatively very expensive. Generations of cheaper synthetic insecticides (like chlorinated aromatics and organophosphorous products) were used instead, with far greater issues of general toxicity and environmental buildup. But more recently, a generation of synthetically produced pyrethrin derivatives has obsoleted the earlier synthetics and their associated problems. I am disappointed to see in places like Town Square that many people aren't the least bit interested in any such details; to them, all pesticides are identical (and dangerous to all life). I bet most of those people don't know about the natural toxicity issue with some "organic" food crops either (subject for another TS thread sometime).


Like this comment
Posted by toxic pesticide
a resident of Fairmeadow
on Jul 13, 2015 at 5:35 pm

I received a card on my step that states: "Your neighborhood has been targeted to be sprayed with a toxic pesticide known to be hazardous to humans, animals and bees". Check out the website that gives data contrary to the above - Web Link


1 person likes this
Posted by further info
a resident of Fairmeadow
on Jul 13, 2015 at 6:06 pm

Links between pyrethroids and hormonal disruption
Links between pyrethroids and childhood brain cancers
Links between pyrethroids and neurological damage
Links between pyrethroids and thyroid damage
Web Link

An Open Letter by Concerned Physicians and Scientists: Stop the Indiscriminate “Friendly Fire” Pesticide Spraying
Web Link

The Safe-Dose Myth
Web Link



3 people like this
Posted by Common sense
a resident of Mountain View
on Jul 13, 2015 at 6:07 pm

No, it is not "data contrary to the above." It is also the standard boilerplate from the Materials Safety Data Sheet and is explained in more detail there. There is vital CONTEXT to this word "toxicity" that people throw around so breathlessly. The MSDS lays out the hazards to humans and other animals exposed to the concentrate that only Vector Control personnel will handle, and they are trained and equipped. Etofenprox is lethal to bees if they are flying, which is why it is sprayed 11PM - 2AM when they are NOT, so tonight's treatment will NOT AFFECT BEES, just as past nighttime applications have not. Contrary to the purely rhetorical throwing around of the "toxic to bees" claim that the technophobes thrill to repeat at every single opportunity (precisely like anti-vaccine fanatics quoting the notoriously discredited British "autism" paper).

The pyrethrin class of insecticides (which includes Etofenprox) is so low in _practical_ toxicities to organisms other than insects and fish that they are classed permissible "organic" food-crop insecticides in some jurisdictions.

All of this information has long been PUBLICLY AVAILABLE to anyone who cared to educate themselves and learn some context, rather than reactively throwing around naïve "pesticides" paranoia and rhetoric.

Even water is "toxic" in enough quantity and taken out of context. (After all, it killed Andy Warhol --who's next???)


1 person likes this
Posted by Hmmm
a resident of Fairmeadow
on Jul 13, 2015 at 6:16 pm

Common sense is telling me this guy might work for Vector Control. What do you think, people?


5 people like this
Posted by Common sense
a resident of Mountain View
on Jul 13, 2015 at 6:19 pm

If people like "further info" were actually interested in insight to the subject, they'd look into it a little more and be surprised at what they found -- unlike the alarmist rhetoric anyone can find by google search, if all they're interested in is stoking naïve anxieties. "further info" has posted links to two reports that rhetorically lump wildly different classes of "pesticides" together as if they were all one material with one set of properties; and a third that begins "There is simply no safe dose of mutagen." Etofenprox is not a mutagen (read the MSDS yourself).

How often do you see people like that pointing out that (to give one example of the complexities here) one common pesticide, lethal to a particular group of pests, is also an essential nutrient to humans and other mammals? An extreme example, but it illustrates that this subject is subtle, and many people posting here don't want to understand that.


3 people like this
Posted by Naturalist
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 13, 2015 at 6:22 pm

Common Sense,
Thankyou for the wiki links. I'm definitely not a technophobe or a vaccine nut. In spite of the 'low' toxicity stated in regards to humans and mammals, unfortunately Aquatic environments and any night active insects of all types do suffer toxicity.


3 people like this
Posted by Hmmm
a resident of Fairmeadow
on Jul 13, 2015 at 6:24 pm

Just sayin'...


2 people like this
Posted by Bridge for sale Cheap
a resident of another community
on Jul 13, 2015 at 6:46 pm

Pesticides are good for you, your children, pets, bees, motherhood and apple pie. And if you believe that, I have a bridge for sale. It is currently named after its owner "Dumbarton" but Arton has agreed to sell it cheap.


3 people like this
Posted by further info
a resident of Fairmeadow
on Jul 13, 2015 at 6:55 pm

Hey Common Sense, I did look into it further, thanks for the suggestion, and you're right, I was surprised at what I found.

This from Wikipedia:

Toxicity
Though pyrethrins are typically viewed as being among the safest insecticides in the market due to their rapid degradation in the environment, synthetic pyrethroids are comparatively toxic, especially to fish and cats.[24] The combination of pyrethrin and pyrethroids in products such as insecticides and shampoos increases the likelihood of toxicity in mammals that are exposed. There is a known medical case of an eleven-year-old girl that used shampoo containing 0.2% pyrethrin to wash her dog. Pre-existing asthma was severely aggravated by the compound in the shampoo, causing the girl to suffer from an acute asthma attack, from which she died two-and-a-half hours after first exposure to the shampoo.[25]

Chronic Pyrethrin Toxicity in Humans
Chronic toxicity in humans occurs most quickly through respiration into the lungs, or more slowly through absorption through the skin.[26] Allergic reactions may occur after exposure, leading to itching and irritated skin as well as burning sensations.[27] These types of reactions are rare because the allergenic component of pyrethrin has been removed.[28] The metabolite compounds of pyrethrin are less toxic to mammals than their originators, and compounds are either broken down in the liver or gastrointestinal tract, or excreted through feces; there has been no evidence of storage in tissues.

Pyrethrum Toxicity
Exposure to pyrethrum, the crude form of pyrethrin,[28] can also cause harmful health effects for mammals. Pyrethrum has an allergenic effect that neither pyrethrin nor pyrethroids have.[28] In mammals, toxic exposure to pyrethrum can lead to tongue and lip numbness, drooling, lethargy, muscle tremors, respiratory failure, vomiting, diarrhea, seizures, paralysis, and death.[26] Unlike dogs, cats lack a liver enzyme that allows for glucuronidation that allows for metabolism of pyrethrin compounds. Exposure to even low doses may lead to toxicity in some cats.[29] Exposure to pyrethrum in high levels in humans may cause symptoms such as asthmatic breathing, sneezing, nasal stuffiness, headache, nausea, loss of coordination, tremors, convulsions, facial flushing and swelling.[30] There is a possibility of damage to the immune system that leads to a worsening of allergies following toxicity.[26] Infants are unable to resourcefully break down pyrethrum due to the ease of skin penetrance, causing similar symptoms as adults, but with an increased risk of death.[31]

Environmental Effects
Aquatic habitats
In aquatic settings, toxicity to pyrethrin fluctuates, increasing with rising temperatures, water, and acidity. Run-off after application has become a concern for sediment-dwelling aquatic organisms because pyrethroids can accumulate in these areas.[32] Aquatic life is extremely susceptible to pyrethrin toxicity, and has been documented in species such as the Lake Trout. Although pyrethrins are quickly metabolized by birds and most mammals, fish and other aquatic invertebrates lack the ability to metabolize these compounds, leading to a toxic accumulation of byproducts.[26] In order to combat the accumulation of pyrethroids in bodies of water, the Environmental Protection Agency has introduced two labeling initiatives. The Environmental Hazard and General Labeling for Pyrethroid and Synergized Pyrethrins Non-Agricultural Outdoor Products was revised in 2013 in order to reduce runoff into bodies of water after use in residential, commercial, institutional, and industrial areas.[33] The Pyrethroid Spray Drift Initiative updated language for labeling all pyrethroid products to be used on agricultural crops.[33] Because of its high toxicity to fish and other aquatic invertebrates even at low doses, the Environmental Protection Agency recommends alternatives such as pesticide-free methods or alternative chemicals that are less harmful to the surrounding aquatic environment.[34]

Bees
Pyrethrins are applied broadly as non-specific insecticides. Bees have been shown to be particularly sensitive to pyrethrin, with fatal doses as small as 0.02 micrograms.[35] Due to this sensitivity and pollinator decline, it is recommended that pyrethrins be applied at night in order to avoid typical pollinating hours, and in liquid rather than dust form.[36]


3 people like this
Posted by Neighbor
a resident of Palo Verde
on Jul 13, 2015 at 10:30 pm

Bees might be safe, but 100s (1000s?) of nocturnal species aren't.
Little fish and amphibians breakfasting on dead bugs tomorrow morning are in for a toxic treat, too.
Off to shut my windows.
Enjoy the bug holocaust.


2 people like this
Posted by Naturalist
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 13, 2015 at 11:00 pm

Well said, Neighbor..

Crickets, frogs will they be heard tomorrow night? :(


12 people like this
Posted by AlexDeLarge
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 13, 2015 at 11:28 pm

Anyone remember the the malathion spying from the eighties? It was a real soaking. I don't think it affected me, or my three headed children.


Like this comment
Posted by Google It
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jul 14, 2015 at 12:10 am

There is interesting psychology behind those who feel the need to opine on a topic when they have nothing of value to say; when they simply need to ridicule others.

I hope you are able to find happiness in your life, because belittling people online is just cowardly.

And we wonder where the teenagers learn to cyber-bully...


9 people like this
Posted by Vegan
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 14, 2015 at 7:14 am

What a beautiful morning. I hope everyone enjoys their non-gmo breakfast cereals with grass-fed free range cow milk (or better yet, almond milk). Don't forget to put on your non-leather sandals and trot your compost bins back from the curb, as today was garbage day, remember! Oh wait, you might want to use your Patagonia hiking gloves to touch the handle, it's laced with toxins. Those poor sanitation workers are in for quite a wallop :(


8 people like this
Posted by Anonymous
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jul 14, 2015 at 7:59 am

I'm not a public health expert but the threat of West Nile Virus worries me more than one exposure to pyrethrins. Vector Control is correct to spray to prevent a wider outbreak.


Like this comment
Posted by Good Question
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 14, 2015 at 9:33 am

Does anyone know the contracted amount the city is paying Vector Control to fog our communities?


10 people like this
Posted by Common sensd
a resident of Mountain View
on Jul 14, 2015 at 9:41 am

Anonymous: Exactly. Couple of hundred California deaths to date from West Nile Virus, while no one has shown any ill effect at all from the periodic limited, low-dose mosquito foggings for it to date by our county vector-control agency.

Threads like this one illustrate the ability of people (see "further info," about 7 comments back) to conjure online out-of-context factoids to buttress their favorite dogma, never using the same ability to step back and see a larger perspective, which might open their minds. ("Chronic pyrethrin toxicity in humans" irrelevant -- humans aren't being exposed to it constantly, or at all; "Pyrethrum allergenicity" irrelevant, pyrethRUM is a specific plant-based preparation not in use here; "Toxic to bees" -- the beloved mantra -- irrelevant unless bees airborne while mist settles, which they aren't; rest of it I've mentioned already myself, here and in past threads!)

Some of us do remember the Med-fly invasion in 1981 (Palo Alto sprayed from low-flying helicopters at night; that agent was malathion, which is more generally toxic, in a cereal attractant mush). Anxious people, as always, were proclaiming the sky is falling. Didn't happen: medflies were controlled, the frogs continued to chirp and the birds to sing and no Palo Alto children were born with multiple heads.


Like this comment
Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jul 14, 2015 at 9:53 am

I believe this was done by the Santa Clara County, not the City. Please put me right if I am wrong.


2 people like this
Posted by Boss Man
a resident of Mountain View
on Jul 14, 2015 at 9:54 am

[Post removed.]


2 people like this
Posted by Love bugs
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jul 14, 2015 at 9:59 am

I opened my window (slightly) at 4:30 this morning and was glad to hear crickets chirping. I hope I continue to hear them. I too feel like the vector control folks could have given us more warning and that last minute notice is their strategy to make sure the fogging happens. No one wants West Nile virus, but we do deserve time to understand what the consequences could be and how we might protect ourselves and our pets and gardens. I have lung problems, so I need to be careful about what I am breathing.


6 people like this
Posted by Slow Down
a resident of Community Center
on Jul 14, 2015 at 10:44 am

Slow Down is a registered user.

The day after... And we made it, except less high pitched whining. (I mean from mosquitos).


3 people like this
Posted by Barely Moving
a resident of Charleston Meadows
on Jul 14, 2015 at 11:49 am

The decade after... And let us see what we made.


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Posted by To Bee or Not To Bee?
a resident of South of Midtown
on Jul 21, 2015 at 11:49 am

Has anyone else noticed the lack of buzzing bees in their trees since last week's fogging debacle? I am really hoping it is merely a coincidence. Sadly, my yard is ominously quiet.


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