Mosquito spraying begins in Eastern North Carolina

POSTED: 11:58 PM Jul 11 2013   UPDATED: 12:41 AM Jul 12 2013
LENOIR COUNTY, KINSTON -

Eastern North Carolina has experienced heavy rainfall, and experts said conditions are perfect for breeding mosquitoes. Some areas have flooded due to rainfall and one city is focusing on the aftermath of all the rain.

Starting Monday, the city of Kinston’s Mosquito Control Program will be spraying for mosquitoes throughout the area.

According to the American Mosquito Control Association, mosquitoes breed in standing water and thrive off humid temperatures.

Kinston’s Public Services Operations Manager Chris Hill said a mosquito's life revolves around water, and city officials aren't waiting for things to get worse.

"We’ve had a lot of rain this year compared to the past couple of years, and we've seen some really big mosquitoes so far," Hill said.

He said they plan to cover the entire city in one week and will only spray from the hours of 3 a.m. to 5 a.m.

"We’ll spray residential areas, parks, fields, really the whole entire city to control the population," Hill said.

According to the American Mosquito Control Association the insects can carry diseases such as West Nile Virus and malaria.

Leah Lewis said she thinks spraying is a great idea. She said she knows this from experience after her brother caught malaria.

"I definitely think spraying and trying to control mosquitoes is better than not doing anything at all," said Lewis.

Hill said not to worry for many residents who fear spraying might release toxic chemicals. 

"It’s approved by the state and we are not spraying anything that's hazardous or anything like that," he said.

Hill said the city receives grant money from the state to help with the cost of spraying for mosquitoes. He said they spend $6,000 to $7,000 in chemicals each year.