City to Spray Insecticide Wednesday to Kill Mosquitoes
Targeted Efforts Protect Albany Park, Lincoln Square, Irving Park, and North Center Residents from West Nile Virus
CHICAGO - The Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH) is continuing its efforts to protect residents against the West Nile virus. Based on results from its citywide mosquito surveillance program, CDPH has determined the need to spray to kill adult mosquitoes in four communities on Wednesday, August 25th, 2021in Albany Park, Lincoln Square, Irving Park, and North Center. This is the first spraying to occur in the city this season.
Weather permitting, the spraying* will begin at dusk on August 25th and continue through the night until approximately 1:00 am, with licensed mosquito abatement technicians in trucks dispensing an ultra-low-volume spray. To download a map of the spray zone, click here.
“CDPH closely monitors for potential health risk due to West Nile virus and quickly responds to protect our residents,” said CDPH Commissioner Allison Arwady, M.D. “While spraying is an important step to protect city residents, the best way to prevent West Nile virus is to protect yourself and your family from mosquito bites.”
In addition to spraying, each year CDPH conducts a comprehensive mosquito surveillance program, which includes placing larvicide in catch basins to limit the number of mosquitoes that can carry the virus, and trapping mosquitoes throughout the city and testing them for the West Nile virus. By using data, the city can target high-risk areas for the virus and keep residents safe.
The material being used to control the adult mosquitoes, Zenivex™, is approved for use by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and has been widely applied to control mosquitoes in outdoor residential and recreational areas. The spray will be applied by licensed mosquito abatement technicians from Vector Disease Control International, a leader in the mosquito control industry. There will be supervisors from the Chicago Department of Streets and Sanitations guiding the crews through the streets.
The spray is not harmful to people or pets and is routinely sprayed in residential areas across the nation. If residents are concerned about the spraying they can choose to stay indoors and close their windows while it is underway. CDPH staff has distributed door hangers in the affected areas notifying residents that the spraying will occur.
CDPH reminds residents that the most effective way to prevent the West Nile virus is to prevent mosquito bites.
- Use insect repellent that contains DEET, Picaridin, IR3535, or Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus.
- Eliminate standing water. This includes emptying water from flowerpots, gutters, pool covers, pet water dishes and birdbaths regularly.
- Keep grass and weeds short to eliminate hiding places for adult mosquitoes.
- When outside between dusk and dawn, wear loose-fitting, light-colored clothing including long pants, long sleeve shirts, socks, and shoes.
- Check that all screens, windows, and doors are tight-fitting and free of holes and tears.
- Check on neighbors regularly who may need additional assistance, including the elderly.
West Nile virus cannot be transmitted from person to person. Instead, it is transmitted strictly through mosquitoes. Most mosquitoes do not carry the virus. Additional information on the virus, including symptoms and how to protect against the virus, can be found at chicago.gov/mosquitoes.
*For photographers and camera crews interested in b-roll and photo of spraying, the staging area for the spraying will occur at 5333 N. Western Ave., Chicago, at 8:00 pm, with spraying beginning at dusk.