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2022 Mosquito Control Program Information

The City of Watertown is gearing up its Mosquito Control Program for the 2022 season. The program is designed to reduce the threat of West Nile Virus which is transmitted to humans through bites by infected mosquitoes. There are 43 known species of mosquitoes in South Dakota and only nineteen are known vectors of West Nile Virus. It is estimated that less than 1% of mosquitoes are infected with the West Nile Virus. And less than 1% of the people bitten by infected mosquitoes will get seriously ill. The chances are very small that you will be infected with the disease, but, even one case of West Nile Virus is considered one case too many. Part of the Citys Mosquito Control Program involves controlling the mosquito population while theyre in the water-borne larvae stage before they develop into the annoying flying mosquitoes weve all become familiar with. This is accomplished by eliminating areas of standing water or treating these breeding areas with larvicide. The City of Watertown uses an organic larvicide which contains a naturally occurring, spore-forming bacterium found throughout the world in soil and aquatic environments, which is toxic to mosquito larvae upon ingestion but harmless to people and animals. The City plans to apply larvicide throughout the mosquito season. This will be applied not only to known breeding areas on public property, but to all storm sewer drains as well. Additional applications will occur as circumstances (wet weather) and surveillance dictates. Mosquito spraying is conducted when mosquito traps indicate significant populations of specific mosquito species that are likely to carry West Nile virus. The public will be notified in advance when and where any spraying for adult mosquitoes will take place. Spraying usually occurs between dusk and early morning. Announcements will appear on local radio stations and on the City of Watertowns webpage ( Although the chance of most people experiencing any health effects from mosquito spraying is quite low, people who suffer from chemical sensitivities, or feel spraying may aggravate a preexisting health condition (especially the elderly) should take special measures to avoid exposure. Consult your physician if you have specific medical concerns regarding how you might be affected by the mosquito spraying. The following are some common sense measures that should be followed when mosquito spraying becomes necessary in your neighborhood: 1. If possible, remain inside whenever spraying takes place. 2. Keep children inside during spraying and for about an hour after spraying. 3. Close windows and doors and turn off your air conditioning (or set it to circulate indoor air) before spraying begins. 4. If you must remain outside, avoid eye contact with the spray. If you get mosquito spray in your eyes, immediately rinse them with water. M:\2022\2022 Mosquito Control Program News Article.docx 2 of 4 5. Wash exposed skin surfaces with soap and water if you come in contact with the mosquito spray. 6. Rinse homegrown fruits and vegetables thoroughly with water before cooking or eating. 7. Cover outdoor tables and play equipment, or wash them with soap and water after spraying. 8. Bring laundry and toys inside before spraying begins. Wash with soap and water if exposed to mosquito spray. 9. Bring pets inside and cover ornamental fishponds to avoid direct exposure. 10. Consult your physician if you think you are experiencing health effects from the spraying. To reduce exposure to mosquitoes and the risk of becoming infected with West Nile Virus, the following steps are also recommended: 1. Stay indoors at dawn, dusk, and in the early evening. 2. Wear light colored, long-sleeved shirts and long pants made of tightly woven materials whenever you are outdoors. 3. Spray clothing with mosquito repellents containing picaridin, IR3535, oil of lemon eucalyptus (OLE) or para-menthane-diol (PMD) products, 2-undecanone, or DEET since mosquitoes may bite through thin clothing. An effective DEET repellent will contain 35% DEET (N,N-diethlmeta-toluamide). DEET in high concentrations (greater than 35%) provides no additional protection. For children, use repellents containing no more than 10% DEET. 4. Apply mosquito repellent sparingly to exposed skin. 5. Mosquito repellents may irritate the eyes and mouth, so avoid applying repellent to the hands of children. 6. Whenever you use mosquito spray or an insect repellent, be sure to read and follow the manufacturers DIRECTIONS FOR USE, as printed on the product. 7. Note: Vitamin B and ultrasonic devices are NOT effective in preventing mosquito bites. 8. Turn off any lights that can attract mosquitoes. Use yellow bug lights for outdoor lighting. Yellow lights are less attractive to insects. 9. Keep grass and weeds cut short to reduce mosquito hiding places. 10. Screens on windows and doors should be bug tight. M:\2022\2022 Mosquito Control Program News Article.docx 3 of 4 As mentioned earlier, the Citys mosquito control program efforts are focused on reducing the local mosquito population by identifying, monitoring, and treating areas within the city limits that have been determined to be the major local breeding areas for mosquito species that are more likely to carry West Nile Virus. All of these areas are located on city-owned property. There is much that can be done by individual property owners to control mosquitoes on their private property. If everyone would take a few minutes each week to check the following potential mosquito breeding areas around their home, the mosquito population in your neighborhood would be greatly reduced: Cans and Buckets. Discard them, store them inside, or turn them upside down. Old Tires. Store in basement or shed where they wont collect rainwater. Barrels and Garbage Cans. Drain them and store tightly covered or upside down. Roof Gutters. Clean out leaves and debris that trap and hold water. Repair sagging gutters. Bird Baths. Change and clean water every day. Wading Pools. Change the water every few days, but make sure that the water you dump out drains away. Turn upside down when not in use. Canoes and Boats. Cover with a tight-fitting tarp, or turn upside down. Open drain plug and tilt boat so water flows out. Ornamental Ponds. Stock with small fish that will eat developing mosquitoes. Puddles and Swampy Areas. Grade to drain off the water, or fill with dirt. Flower Pots and Vases. Drain standing water from pot saucers and change water in outdoor vases every couple of days. Leaky Faucets and Hoses. Repair leaking faucets and drain area beneath. Tarps or Plastic Sheets. Make sure the coverings on boats, swimming pools, compost piles, etc. are pulled tight and sloped so that rainwater runs off. Pet or Livestock Watering Pans. Empty frequently, clean, and refill. Wheelbarrows. Store under cover in a basement or shed or upside down. Drainage Basins. Remove stagnant water from sump pits, dry wells, or drainage basins. Cesspools and Septic Tanks. Make sure systems are tightly covered, operating properly, and not overflowing. M:\2022\2022 Mosquito Control Program News Article.docx 4 of 4 Storm Drains. Check to see that water flows freely and is not blocked by leaves and debris. Tree Holes. Remove stumps or fill stumps or tree holes with sand or other filler. For more information about mosquitoes or the West Nile Virus, check out the following websites on the internet: If you have any questions, contact: Terry Kelly, Parks, Recreation, and Forestry Director Parks, Recreation, and Forestry Phone: 882 - 6260 E-mail:

Upcoming Events by Prairie Lakes Healthcare System

WATERTOWN, S.D. – July 7, 2022– Prairie Lakes Healthcare System is offering educational classes and events open to the public in the upcoming weeks. To register for upcoming events, please visit


Cancer Support Group- Prairie Lakes Healthcare System offers an ongoing monthly cancer support group which is open to those living with cancer, those who’ve survived cancer, and caregivers. Meetings include a speaker presentation and an opportunity to meet others in similar situations. This group meets the third Tuesday of every month (subject to change for holidays) at 3:00 pm in the West Conference Room at Prairie Lakes Healthcare System. The next group meetings areJuly 19th, August 16th, and September 20th. For upcoming support group details, call the Prairie Lakes Cancer Center at 605-882-6800.


Your Total Joint Journey – Your Total Joint Journey is a free educational class for patients considering or scheduled for total joint replacement surgery and their caregiver or coach. Your Total Joint Journey is designed to give attendees and their caregiver or coach the necessary tools and understanding of a total joint replacement. Each attendee will receive an informational booklet to take home. Prairie Lakes Rehabilitation Services offers the class at noon on the second and fourth Tuesday of the month at Prairie Lakes Specialty Clinic Conference Center.  Upcoming dates are July 12th, July 26th, and August 9th at noon.  Register online at prairielakeshealthcaresystem.eventbrite.comor call 605-882-7700.

Pathway Through Grief –Prairie Lakes Healthcare System offers an ongoing monthly grief support group called Pathway Through Grief where those who have experienced the death of a loved one can find comfort, support, and hope.  You may attend meetings as you wish, for as long as you want. At these meetings, informal presentations and roundtable discussions are used to support those grieving and offer hope for their future.  The group meets at 4:00 pm the second Tuesday of the month in the West Conference Room at Prairie Lakes Healthcare System.  The next meeting dates are July 12th, August 9th, and September 13th at 4:00 pm. The meetings are open to the community and are free of charge, but registration is required. Register at prairielakeshealthcaresystem.eventbrite.comor call 605-882-7714.

Childbirth Class Series - Prepare for your baby! Prairie Lakes Healthcare System helps to make the birthing experience happy and memorable for everyone involved. This free educational four-class series is designed to prepare the expectant mother and her support person for labor and delivery. The series location will be determined when the event date is closer. Registrants will be notified by a Prairie Lakes Childbirth Educator if the event will be held in person or online. For event details and registration, visit prairielakeshealthcaresystem.eventbrite.comor call Prairie Lakes Childbirth Educators at 605-882-7628.


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