Is Mosquito Surveillance Conducted?
The Memphis & Shelby County Health Department's Mosquito Control Program has a very aggressive surveillance component with great emphasis placed on obtaining accurate intelligence on local mosquito activities. Surveillance personnel maintain an effective and sensitive network that emphasizes a variety of surveillance techniques and equipment used in arbovirus programs for disease prevention. Surveillance focuses on data collection, processing, and analyzing of mosquitoes. Surveillance personnel also provide training and education to the public through churches, schools, news media, and town hall meetings.
Additional Mosquito Control Efforts
Health Department employees conduct surveillance to locate mosquito breeding areas and work to solve mosquito problems through water management, habitat management, the utilization of mosquito-eating fish, and chemical applications to control mosquitoes. Environmentally compatible pesticides are used by the Memphis and Shelby County Health Department's Mosquito Control Program to control only mosquitoes and leave non-target organisms alone.
Light traps are also utilized to monitor mosquito populations and sentinel chicken flocks are used to monitor West Nile virus as well as western equine and St. Louis encephalitis disease activity. When adult mosquito populations are high or when the potential for mosquito-transmitted diseases to humans warrant, aerosol spray operations are used to lower adult mosquito populations and reduce the public health threat.
The Health Department has 13 ultra-low volume machines used to control adult mosquitoes in Memphis and Shelby County when surveillance techniques dictate.