Hayden For the past two weeks, the Hayden Town Hall phones have been ringing with complaints about the number of mosquitoes infesting the area.
In response, the town of Hayden has arranged for an aerial spraying of the pesticide Malathion either today or Friday. The exact day and time are dependent on weather and wind conditions.
Malathion is considered to be the safest of aerial pesticides, but it is not completely safe. Malathion is a cholinesterase inhibitor.
Cholinesterase is an enzyme needed for the proper functioning of the nervous system in humans and insects.
Malathion kills mosquitoes by interfering with cholinesterase.
Inhalation a large amount of the chemical can inhibit cholinesterase in humans, which will overstimulate the nervous system, causing nausea, dizziness and confusion.
"We have looked at alternatives," Town Manager Rob Straebel said. "This is the only pesticide which is legal for aerial use in both urban and agricultural areas."
Christine McKelvie, public relations director at Yampa Valley Medical Center, said none of the staff in the emergency department can remember ever treating anyone for Malathion poisoning.
Hayden has been aerial spraying for the past two years. The Town Board gauged the amount of insect complaints received and believed it was appropriate timing for another spraying.
"We certainly think it's worth it," Straebel said. "The low dosage that we use is proven to be safe.
"I have a folder about six inches thick with information about Malathion," Straebel said.
Anyone interested in more information is welcome to stop by Town Hall, he said.
Before the town tried aerial spraying, it did fogging by truck. Straebel said a lot of residents were concerned about the amount of pesticide being used.
"We believe the aerial approach is more efficient and we will have to do it fewer times," he said.
The town has budgeted for three aerial sprayings this summer.