The city conducts mosquito surveillance, which consists of early monitoring every spring and regular monitoring throughout the summer and/or from the beginning until the end of the mosquito season. Click here for a map of surveillance locations.
Monitoring, Testing & Notifications
Haltom City's role begins when the Tarrant County Public Health Department Mosquito Monitoring Program initiates. Trapping activities are conducted throughout the primary mosquito . During this time frame five stationary traps per week are set. Collected samples are delivered to the Tarrant County Public Health Department's lab for West Nile Virus and Saint Louis Encephalitis Virus testing. There is no testing for Zika virus, or other viruses that are known to be imported, offered by the Tarrant County Public Health Department at this moment. Presence of imported viruses in local areas are confirmed by a positive human case.
If any mosquito trapped within the Haltom City limits tests positive for West Nile Virus or Saint Louis Encephalitis Virus, or if the city is notified of any confirmed human cases that have been transmitted locally (signifying its presence in the local mosquito population), notification will be posted on here on the city’s website and social media accounts. Also, targeted ULV fogging will most likely occur, and the area will be investigated to see if additional measures are needed.
- Includes trapping and testing of mosquitoes for viruses
- Provides monitoring of naturally existing environmental habitats (creeks, flood plains, ponds, etc.) and man-made environments. Additional inspections are conducted in response to phone calls, emails and other alerts from the public.
- Includes treatment of areas found to contain mosquito larvae with larvicides and/or mosquito fish.
- Haltom City uses mosquito fish as biocontrol agent, a predatory fish that feeds on mosquito larvae. Additionally, the city utilizes larvicides...the biological insecticides that kill larvae.
Abatement Options Utilized by Haltom City
Haltom City has different options, dependent on the area being treated:
Large Area Treatment for Mosquito Larva
The turbine air sprayer has a vertical spray reach of up to 125’ and horizontal reach up to 450’ and can discreetly and unobtrusively deliver larvicide treatments into hard to reach cryptic breeding sites of residential back yards, around construction sites, cemeteries and more. The system has been designed to allow for an application speed of 15 mph, much like that of traditional adulticide ULV applications. This piece of equipment will be utilized as part of a phased response to manage viruses of concern (mainly the West Nile Virus) at low levels in City.
Use of this equipment is not meant to replace the responsibility of an resident in control of any premises in the Haltom City to maintain their property in such a manner that it’s allowed to become a nuisance and/or detrimental to the public health and welfare.
This piece of equipment will be utilized as part of a phased response to manage viruses of concern (mainly the West Nile Virus) at low levels in Haltom City.
Proper terminology is ULV (Ultra Low Volume) Fogging, not spraying. When it comes to fogging, the City of Haltom City follows recommendations from the Tarrant County Public Health Department and Professional Mosquito Control Companies. Typically, that recommendation is to spray within a 1/2-mile radius of any trap where a mosquito tests positive for the West Nile Virus or Saint Louis Encephalitis Virus, and typically the City will spray the area 3 consecutive days, weather permitting. We use insecticides that offer low toxicity, low odor, rapid biodegradation and high mosquito mortality. Fogging generally takes place between 9:00 p.m. and 5:00 a.m. while mosquitoes are active and winds are slow.
The Safety Data Sheet for DUETS Dual Action Adulticide can be downloaded below in PDF format.
Safeguards when this device is utilized include:
- The active ingredient (sumithrin) utilized for ULV fogging is commonly found in many household, pet, and livestock spray items.
- Product toxicity is actually much higher in homeowner products available through the feed store or hardware store. Mosquito products available widely for yard applications have from 32 times to 110 times more concentration of active ingredient than the product used for ULV ground fogging.
- If able, pets should be brought indoors or put into a protected area. Outdoor water dishes should be emptied and refilled the next morning.
- Poultry can be placed into henhouses or protected areas and allowed out, after daylight, the following morning
- Homegrown produce grown in the response zone may be rinsed before consumption, but risk of contamination is extremely low.
- The nights of the application, ornamental fish ponds can be covered with tarps or plastic if located close to the roadway the fog trucks will be travelling. Coverings should be removed at daylight the following day.
- Honey bee colonies can be covered after dark on the nights with the covers promptly removed at dawn the following day. This material does not pose an issue for honey bees since the bees are not actively foraging while the application is taking place. As a side note, the material is precisely calibrated in a droplet size to impact an insect with the body mass of a mosquito and the material volatilizes after about five minutes. If some material happens to form residue on the ground or plants, the product is very rapidly degraded when exposed to UV light.
- Filters on air conditioning systems are sufficient to filter the product from the living space or car cabin, so please do not turn off the air systems.
- If you happen to drive behind a fog truck while in the operation of fogging, wait for the truck to pull over and pass promptly with the windows up and the air system on recirculate.
Why Doesn’t the City just Fog the Entire City for Mosquitoes?
The City strives to meet budget goals while trying to effectively keep mosquitoes carrying viruses low. To do this the City’s integrated Mosquito Virus Surveillance and Abatement Program focuses more on controlling mosquito borne viruses than just killing adult mosquitoes. The Program consists of public education, surveillance, source reduction, laviciding, and targeted adulticiding.