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Mosquitoes at Greer Park

Original post made by Michelle, Duveneck/St. Francis, on Aug 13, 2012

Has anyone noticed how terrible the mosquitoes have become at Greer Park? My daughter was playing soccer there this morning and came home covered in bites. I walked the dogs round - not even across the grass - and also came home with many bites. Plus you can see clouds of them rising up if you disturb the ivy etc.

I spoke to a gardener there this morning to express my concern that the over-watering of the grass (it's soaking) was contributing to the problem and he claimed that the wetness of the grass had nothing to do with the mosquito population. But the Santa Clara County Vector Control website says overwatered lawn is definitely a breeding ground.

If you are going to be at Greer for any amount of time, wear bug spray!

Comments (7)

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Posted by Kramer
a resident of Midtown
on Aug 13, 2012 at 9:05 pm

They seem bad all over. My whole family is bitten up. I got an email from AYSO (soccer) today that said the mosquitos aren't the kind linked to West Nile, so that's somewhat of a relief, but man am I itchy!

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Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 13, 2012 at 9:48 pm

Mosquitoes have been bad the last week around our home and we don't have standing water or overwater. They are managing to get into our house as well as spoiling outside activities.

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Posted by Michelle
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Aug 14, 2012 at 10:43 am

I emailed the Santa Clara County Vector Control, and this is what they emailed back:

Dear Concerned Residents and Guests of the Palo Alto Baylands and surrounding areas,

Thank you for contacting our district concerning the unusual mosquito situation in the Palo Alto Baylands neighborhoods.

1. What is the cause of the mosquito outbreak?

The Mayfield Tidal Gate, which controls the flow of bay tide water to the entire Flood Control Basin, has been rendered inoperative due to a massive hole, or breach, which eroded the structure under the waterline below the tide gate doors. Unable to restrict the tidal flow and prevent flooding, this broken gate structure is now allowing vast areas of marsh flooding to occur in normally seasonally bone-dry areas. This area of flooding, over 200 acres worth, contains many years’ of previously dormant mosquito eggs. These eggs became activated when flooded with salt water and became the mosquito outbreak which is now afflicting the Palo Alto Baylands surrounding area.

2. What is Santa Clara County Vector Control District doing to control this situation?

Since the discovery of the Tidal Gate problem, we have been performing continuous larvicidal treatments over the flooded areas of the basin. These larvicidal treatments, using the safest, most environmentally-friendly products, are extremely effective at eliminating the summer salt marsh mosquitoes in their juvenile larval form, before they have a chance to hatch off and bite. These treatments are weekly and ongoing and will continue as long as the areas remain flooded.

3. What can a person do to avoid getting bit?

Wear mosquito repellant over exposed and on top of clothes, rather than under clothing. These day-time/night-time biting mosquitoes are very aggressive and will readily bite through clothing as thick as denim jeans and thicker. Spraying or wiping a repellant containing DEET on top of clothing will help tremendously.

Please contact the Santa Clara Valley Water District, at, for updates on the tide gate repair project.

We are continuing to do all we can to control and eliminate the current mosquito problem. Your health and welfare are very important to us and we thank you for your patience.

Paul Reyes – Vector Control Technician II

Like this comment
Posted by Cubberly fields uses
a resident of Stanford
on Aug 14, 2012 at 9:22 pm

Mosquitos have also turned out to be a problem at Cubberly fields this week. My daughter is attending a soccer camp and she and her team mates were getting bitten up until I sent her with bug spray.

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Posted by some guy
a resident of another community
on Aug 14, 2012 at 9:26 pm

As human beings, our place in the ecosystem is to provide food for mosquitoes.

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Posted by Anon.
a resident of Crescent Park
on Aug 14, 2012 at 10:11 pm

> As human beings, our place in the ecosystem is to provide food for mosquitoes.

So true ... and of course mountain lions too ... I hope you are willing to volunteer for that cause I am not.

Like this comment
Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 23, 2012 at 5:35 pm


Many thanks for all you did. From the editorial, it sounds like you oiled the greasy wheel and got results. It does pay to complain.

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