mosquito control

This post was updated at at 12:15 p.m. on Sept. 12

The prospect of genetically modified mosquitoes is back for the Florida Keys — just as a new study raises concerns about the technology.

Mosquito Control Section

Recent heavy rain is prompting plans for more mosquito spraying around Broward County.

Weather permitting, larvicide-spraying trucks will roll through certain neighborhoods in Fort Lauderdale, Hollywood, Dania Beach, Davie, Pembroke Pines and Cooper City between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. from Monday to Aug. 3, according to Mosquito Control officials.

The spray targets the larvae of disease-carrying mosquitoes.

Read more at the Sun Sentinel.

Disease-Carrying Mosquitoes Targeted For Weekend Spraying

Jun 20, 2019
LUIS ROBAYO / AFP/Getty Images

After trapping a high number of the type of mosquitoes that carry diseases, Broward County is getting aggressive.

This weekend, Broward will target four areas of the county where traps have caught larvae or adult disease-carrying mosquitoes known as Aedes aegypti that have the possibility to spread viruses like Zika. Those areas are Pembroke Pines, Dania Beach, Fort Lauderdale and Hollywood, as the Sun Sentinel reports.

Bruce Stevens / Florida Keys Mosquito Control District

Rainy season in South Florida means it's also mosquito season. And now there's a new weapon being added to the arsenal against the insects in the Florida Keys.

The sunlight coming through the picture window of Debbie Casey’s room at a nursing home in Daytona Beach falls on a message board covered with pictures from her life. 

The next great insect repellent might come from a strain of bacteria that lives inside a common parasitic worm.

A study published Wednesday in Science Advances has found that a compound derived from these bacteria is three times more potent than DEET in repelling mosquitoes. More research must be done to demonstrate its safety, but this bacterial chemical could play an important role in the fight against mosquito-borne illness.

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People who live in the Florida Keys have been waiting for years to find out whether the island chain will be the first place in the U.S. to try genetically modified mosquitoes as a method of controlling the pests.

They're going to have to wait awhile longer.

For the first time, scientists have demonstrated that a controversial new kind of genetic engineering can rapidly spread a self-destructive genetic modification through a complex species.

A Florida official has proposed using bats to reduce mosquito populations.

Kate Stein / WLRN

This year, Miami-Dade County's arsenal of mosquito-fighting technology includes traps, spraying backpacks -- and mosquito-eating fish. 

Danny Hwang

Peak mosquito season is coming and Miami-Dade County officials say they are ready to fight it with a new weapon: a bacteria that makes mosquitos sterile. 

Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Giménez said in a press conference Wednesday that the county will be using the Wolbachia bacteria to handle the Aedes Aegypti mosquito, which is seen as being primarily responsible for transmitting diseases like Dengue and Zika.

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As the rainy season returns — along with the disease-carrying mosquitoes that reproduce in standing water — the public is getting another chance to comment on one proposed method for fighting mosquitoes.

Amanda Rabines / WLRN News

Mosquito season has officially arrived in Florida, although many would argue it never left.

That perception may soon become reality, according to new studies that show the higher temperatures brought on by climate change are already increasing the range and biting season for many mosquitoes, including the Aedes aegypti — the infamous carriers of viruses like dengue and Zika, which hit Miami hard enough in 2016 to scare off many tourists.

Imagine this: A pesky mosquito sips some of your blood. Hours later, the blood-sucker drops dead, poisoned by the very blood it just slurped down.

Human skin is a cornucopia of fragrances.

The bacteria living on our skin emit more than 200 odor chemicals.

"Many of these molecules smell quite pleasant," says biologist Jeff Riffell at the University of Washington. "They smell grassy or a little bit like mushrooms. Some human scents are the same ones found in flowers."

Other chemicals — well — they aren't so nice. "They're pretty funky," Riffell says, like an overripe Brie cheese or a musty basement.

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