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Mosquito spraying scheduled for Suffolk, officials say

Suffolk County has scheduled aerial and ground spraying for Wednesday and Thursday with an eye toward mosquito control using the pesticide Anvil, county health officials said.

Ground spraying is planned Thursday from 6 to 10 p.m., weather permitting, for all streets in the Fire Island communities of Fire Island Pines, Summer Club, Atlantique and Water Island.

The following schedule was previously announced:

  • Thursday’s aerial spraying from 7 to 11:30 p.m. in areas of Islip, East Islip and Great River.
  • Wednesday’s ground spraying from 7 to 11:30 p.m., in parts of the following communities: Gilgo Beach, Oak Beach, Captree Island, Cedar Beach and the golf course in Babylon Town; Bellport and Brookhaven hamlet.
  • Wednesday’s ground spraying from 6 to 10 p.m. of all streets in the Fire Island communities of Seaview, Ocean Beach and Ocean Bay Park.

The chances of experiencing health effects from the ground spraying are “quite low,” the health department said, but children and pregnant women should avoid exposure by staying clear of the area during spraying and at least 30 minutes after.

Among the protective measures the department suggests are closing doors, windows and air-conditioning vents before the spraying and keeping them closed 30 minutes after.

In addition to being annoying, some mosquitoes’ bites can transmit West Nile virus to people. This year, there is also a concern about the Zika virus, which can be transmitted by a certain type of mosquito that has not been found on Long Island.

Health officials say residents can help make areas around their homes unfriendly to mosquitoes by:

  • Regularly looking for and eliminating even the smallest amounts of standing water, which is where the insects reproduce, including cans, buckets and other containers, as well as old tires, tarps, pool covers and children’s toys.
  • Drilling drainage holes at the bottom of garbage cans, changing birdbath water at least weekly and making sure roof gutters are unclogged and draining properly.
  • Adding fish to circulate water in any backyard ponds, and clearing pond edges of debris and vegetation.