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Battle against skeeters a little behind schedule

First round of fogging ends this morning

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Mosquito fogging in Winnipeg is behind schedule thanks to inclement weather overnight.

The City of Winnipeg’s insect control branch said today it was not able to complete fogging in all the scheduled insect-management areas of southwest Winnipeg.

Today, weather permitting, fogging will take place in insect management areas 18, 21, 23, 24, 27 and 29. Upon completion, crews will fog in Insect Management Areas 3, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 13, 15, 16, 17, and 19.

Click here to view your area.

Trap counts in southwest Winnipeg were substantially higher than in other neighbourhoods. Before fogging Saturday, trap counts in Assiniboine Park registered 3,552 mosquitoes.

'I haven't even noticed them much here, but they've been filthy recently. They definitely need to fog'

The lowest trap count on Saturday was registered in the RM of Macdonald, where a single mosquito was counted.

The average trap count in the city was 223 during the last couple of days.

The neighbourhoods of Assiniboine Park, Charleswood, Royalwood and Waverley were among the first to be fogged.

On Saturday, people at Assiniboine Park seemed split on the idea of whether or not fogging in the area was necessary. While some wore long sleeves and were still getting eaten alive by mosquitoes, others wore little clothing and didn't seem fazed by the bugs.

Frisbee-throwing friends Jesse Hardie and Darnell Banman were in the latter group.

"I haven't even noticed them much here, but they've been filthy recently. They definitely need to fog," said Hardie.

A shirtless Banman said he hadn't gotten any bites during his first half-hour at the park and was surprised Assiniboine Park had the highest mosquito count registered.

Minutes later, another Assiniboine Park attendee, Emmellie Velasco, called the mosquitoes in the area terrible as she doused herself with bug spray.

On top of the pesky mosquitoes, Saturday's heat warning caused further discomfort at Assiniboine Park. The temperature hit a high of 30 C, with the humidex raising the heat to feel like 40 C.

Dog-walkers Justine Bullen and JT Austin stopped to rest with their black bulldog, Lola, who was lapping from her bowl of water while also getting bitten by skeeters.

"Sometimes when she gets bit in the face, her forehead swells up and she gets a big bump," said Bullen of her pup.

"She does a really good rhino impression," added Austin.

Ken Nawolsky, Winnipeg's insect control superintendent, said at a news conference Friday the city's fogging schedule will be planned around necessity--the areas with the highest trap counts, like Assiniboine Park, will take first priority when fogging.

The city will be using malathion and pyrocide to ward off mosquitoes; both are insecticides that have been approved by Health Canada. Permanone will be the chemical of choice for residual treatments.

Fogging will happen nightly from 9:30 p.m. to 6:30 a.m. until the city deems the mosquito population under control.

"We're currently in another emergence (of mosquitoes) because of the substantial rainfall over the weekend," Nawolsky said Friday. "(The mosquitoes) are in the middle of their life cycle now, and we're expecting another emergence between Tuesday and Wednesday."

For an interactive map of trap counts around the city, go to http://wfp.to/X6t.

jessica.botelho-urbanski@freepress.mb.ca

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition July 6, 2014 A4

History

Updated on Sunday, July 6, 2014 at 11:25 AM CDT: Adds fogging behind schedule.

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