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Mosquito Control Hard at Work as Season Picks Up

PANAMA CITY BEACH, Fla. - We've now entered the season of baseball games, outdoor cookouts and mosquito bites.

The Beach Mosquito Control District is Panama City Beach's saving grace in the summers. 

We all know Florida for it's wetlands; also known as, a mosquito's heaven.

"They're dormant in the winter time, just waiting for the summer time," Brad Gunn, the chief pilot, said.

That's why the Beach Mosquito control traps mosquitos to determine where and how often they need get rid of them.

"We need to know also if there's viral activity so how they will do this is they will trap mosquito larvae and test them for viruses," Cindy Mulla, the public relations and education specialist for the mosquito control, said.

Workers are able to treat some spots by truck.

"The problem is they physically can't get into the wetland areas. That's when we use a helicopter," Gunn said.

At 87 miles-per-hour and 80 feet above the trees, an insecticide is paired with little corn grains.

"It just drops into the water from the air," Gunn said.

It only drops in spots they know need to be treated.

"The taxpayers pay for this stuff so we utilize it when we need to and have to," he said.

He said there are misconceptions about his work. "A lot of people think I'm dumping gallons and  gallons," he said.

Just two thirds of an ounce of the insecticide is all that's needed to cover an entire acre.

Those living in Panama City Beach are at an advantage.

"There's very few places in the country that do what we do," he said.

The Beach Mosquito Control District only carefully spray at night time. 

It's when the most diseased carrying mosquitoes are out and when the state requires them to do so.


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