The City of Bedford works with the Tarrant County Public Health Department (TCPH) in a county-wide mosquito surveillance program. All participating cities, including Bedford, set out mosquito traps in strategic locations, collect samples of mosquitoes, and deliver them to the TCPH laboratory for testing of West Nile Virus and St. Louis Encephalitis. Each week five mosquito traps are set within City limits. If a mosquito pool tests positive, the city is notified and action is taken to inform the public. If TCPH discovers a human case within City limits, staff will inform the public to take special precautions to protect themselves. Test results are posted on the TCPH's interactive map at https://gisit.tarrantcounty.com/VSCoop/.
The City of Bedford's Stormwater Division is responsible for surveying drainage areas for the presence of mosquito larvae and treating areas as needed on a monthly basis. If mosquito larvae are found, they will treat the stagnate water with products such as CoCo Bear (derived from coconut oil), Naturalar G30, or Vectolex CG granules. Any areas with live fish are not treated because the fish eat mosquito larvae. Creeks are stocked as needed with minnows from the health department to assist in mosquito control. Minnows are not distributed to the public.
For more information on the City's efforts to control mosquitoes, review the 2015 Integrated Mosquito Management Program.
Why does the City not spray?
Truck spraying is not an especially effective strategy for combating mosquitoes. The spray only dissipates over front yards and does not linger in the air for long. The Public Works Department is proactive in using larvicides to target larva in breeding habitats before they can mature into adult mosquitoes and disperse. Public Works staff is committed to stopping mosquitoes in the larval stage before they are fully formed. With the help of diligent citizens, this strategy should reduce the community’s mosquito population.
Tarrant County Health Department Tips:
Adult flying mosquitoes frequently rest in grass, shrubbery, or other foliage. It is the young mosquitoes who need standing water to develop. Mosquitoes breed and multiply in any water that lasts more than four days. Eliminating places where mosquitoes can breed is the best way to control them.
Here are some additional suggestions to prevent mosquitoes breeding conditions around your home and yard: