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Bath officials learn about high mosquito count in area

8/22/2013 - West Side Leader
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By Julia Kazar

During the regular Bath Board of Trustees meeting Aug. 19, trustees heard a presentation from Terry Tuttle, of Summit County Public Health, about the alarming number of mosquitoes in the area this summer.

Tuttle explained seven mosquito traps are set in different areas of Bath, along with 14 others throughout Summit County, each summer. Once mosquitoes are captured, Tuttle has them sent to a lab to test for West Nile Virus (WNV) and other diseases.

When asked why traps are set in different areas each year, Tuttle explained that it’s to try and get an idea of where the mosquitoes carrying the most diseases are located.

“We try to set them in the areas we feel are most conducive to disease-carrying mosquitoes,” Tuttle said. “We keep moving them around each year because we don’t know where they will be most active.”

So far this year, four traps in Bath have tested positive for WNV — three July 23 and one Aug. 8.

Areas where infected mosquitoes were caught have been sprayed, but Tuttle warned that more could still be active.

“When we spray, we pretty much have to hit the mosquitoes when they’re flying,” he explained. “The chemicals used, while very effective, don’t fall very far from the truck they’re sprayed from and evaporate by early the next morning usually.”

The areas where WNV was found are the corner of West Bath Road and Reserve Drive, near the intersection of West Bath Road and Forest Pool Road, near North Cleveland-Massillon Road and Ira Road near Dogwood Lane, and between Shade Park Drive and Lakeview.

Tuttle said usually mosquitoes infected with WNV will fly less than a mile in their lifetime, so workers concentrated on spraying in those areas.

Tuttle also noted this season he has seen an unusually high number of mosquitoes caught in the traps.

“I would be surprised to see a trap with 400 to 500 mosquitoes usually,” Tuttle said, “This year, we have had traps with over 1,000. I’m at a loss to explain why the numbers are so high.”

Trustee Becky Corbet mentioned local residents who want to minimize mosquitoes on their properties may call the Summit County Public Health office at 330-923-4891 and ask for a perimeter spray.

In other business, trustees:

  • swore in Eric Shaffer as a full-time police officer. Shaffer will be the new school resource officer for the Revere Local School District [for more on Shaffer, see the related Education News & Notes item on Page 9];
  • declared Halloween trick-or-treat will take place Oct. 27 from 5 to 7 p.m.; and
  • noted several community events are coming up, including the School House Tour of Stony Hill Schoolhouse, which will take place Sept. 8 at noon, and the Barn Social taking place Sept. 11 at 7 p.m. at the Kahoe Barn, 2881 Walnut Ridge Road.

Due to the Labor Day holiday Sept. 2, the board’s next meeting will be Sept. 3 at 7 p.m. in the trustees’ meeting room of the Bath Administration Building, 3864 W. Bath Road.

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