Southern Brooklyn

West Nile Spraying Tonight: What To Do


Look at that map. If you live or work in or near any of the yellow-shaded areas, then the city will be spraying chemicals to kill mosquitoes on your block. Spraying will begin tonight at 8:00 p.m. and continue until 6:00 a.m. tomorrow morning.

Like any time a government sprays a bunch of toxic crap in the air, they’re saying the chemical used – Anvil 10+10 – has no known risk to humans. But it’s The Man, man, so here are a couple of things you should do to make sure you stay safe and don’t grow an arm out of your butt (tips courtesy of The Man, not guaranteed to be 100 percent effective):

  • Stay indoors whenever possible during that time period – especially if you have asthma or respiratory issues.
  • Close the vents on your air-conditioner and set it to recirculate.
  • Remove toys, equipment and clothing from outdoor areas. If you leave them out there, make sure to wash them with soap before using them.
  • If you have an outdoor garden, wash your produce thoroughly before eating it.

Here’s a .pdf from the city detailing the spraying and safety tips, and here’s the city’s webpage for West Nile Virus. Tip o’ the hat to for beating me to this.

Comment policy


  1. West Nile Spraying: Summary of Concerns
    It is the position of No Spray Sacramento that widespread pesticide spraying to control
    adult mosquitoes and West Nile virus is reactionary and of questionable effectiveness.
    Repeated and widespread spraying is required to gain, at best, only partial and shortterm
    reductions in mosquito populations.1 In light of the risks associated with pesticide
    exposure to people and the environment, we support an emphasis on preventative
    methods of mosquito control which include aggressive water management,
    comprehensive public outreach and continued mosquito larvae control.
    The following are key reasons why we question the use of adulticides to prevent West
    1. West Nile is generally a mild illness that affects few people, even during
    peak infection years.2 Less than 1% of the few who do become infected with the virus
    may experience serious symptoms. The elderly and immune compromised are most at
    risk for developing debilitating symptoms of West Nile – children are not at increased
    risk for becoming infected or experiencing illness if infected.4 West Nile is not passed
    from person to person, and people do not serve as reservoirs, as birds do, for the virus.
    2. There are known risks associated with pesticide exposure in addition to a
    likely variety of unknown risks. The chemicals in Evergreen 60-6, the pesticide
    formula used to control adult mosquitoes through aerial spraying, include pyrethrin (6%
    of the spray) and piperonyl butoxide, or PBO (60% of the spray), along with inert
    ingredients, which are not disclosed to the public.
    • The presentation of pyrethrin as being safe and “natural” is
    intentionally misleading.
    o The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has classified pyrethrins as
    “likely to be carcinogenic to humans”. 9
    o Pyrethrin is known to be highly toxic to fish and tadpoles, and toxic to
    beneficial insects that prey on mosquitoes and many aquatic
    o Exposure to pyrethrin is associated with brain tumors in children.11
    • PBO is added to the pesticide to inhibit the metabolism of pyrethrin
    and increase its toxicity. 12
    o PBO is a suspected carcinogen, and a suspected liver, reproductive and
    neurotoxin. 1
    o Public health officials and vector control management mislead the public
    into accepting pesticide exposure as low risk by failing to acknowledge
    that PBO renders pyrethrin up to 150 times more toxic than EPA testing,
    which is done on single ingredients, shows.14
    • Pesticide mixtures pose serious risks to people and the environment.
    o Ingredients in the pesticide sprayed over Sacramento county may
    combine with other chemicals to create mixtures that can be vastly more
    toxic to humans and the environment than tests on single ingredients
    o This phenomenon has been documented even when individual pesticides
    in the mixture are present at extremely low concentrations.
    • Reassurances of insignificant pesticide exposure do not reflect the
    amount of area sprayed (approximately 115,000 acres in 2005) or the
    necessity for repeat applications. Drift and runoff issues also make
    predictions of exposure problematic.13
    • Potentially toxic levels of pesticide residues were found in local
    waterways after spraying.14 Despite reassurances that the pesticide would be
    destroyed by sunlight “in a matter of hours”,3 water sampling done after spraying
    showed 6 out of 10 samples contained pesticide residues. Four samples showed
    increasing pesticide concentrations up to the time when sampling was ended 20
    hours after the spraying.
    3.Widespread pesticide spraying has not been shown to be effective, and
    may actually create conditions that lead to greater than expected cases of
    West Nile infections. 1 Pesticide spraying may lead to a vicious cycle that paves the
    way for season after season of West Nile spraying. Our local vector control district’s
    manager has speculated that the adulticide spraying conducted in the summer of 2005
    may have contributed to anticipated greater than expected rates of West Nile this coming
    mosquito season. 15 And an analysis conducted by the Department of Health Services
    shows that at most last summer’s spraying prevented only a handful of cases.16
    Interruption of spraying schedules caused by the Delta winds, mosquito resistance to
    pesticides, pesticide related reduction of mosquito eating insect populations,
    inaccessibility of mosquitoes, and abandonment of water management and personal
    protection measures by the public (due to reliance on pesticide spraying) combine to
    limit the effectiveness of adulticide spraying to, at best, a temporary reduction in

  2. And was that at a time when they were taking precautions against it?

    It scares me because the transmission could be effected so easily. Mosquitoes are so common.

  3. Trying to sort the risks against the benefits is mind-numbing.

    The claim that 1% of the cases of WNF are serious is relative to the number of cases reported. We have yet to see a true epidemic here. But a 1000 cases would mean 10 serious ones. The question is whether methods used to combat the disease are effective, and the best case scenario.

  4. They have the same problem in other states with foreclosure homes…
    Many pools from foreclosure homes are filled with MOLD water that attracts bugs and etc…
    Luckily NYC, doesn’t have such a problem..
    But, better to be safe…

  5. The risk of poisoning millions of New Yorkers, versus the few people who will actually get the disease, is not a wise choice. Most, if not all of the people who actually get the west nile virus already have other pre-existing medical conditions, ie: compromised immune systems, etc.

    Get in line NOW for the class action suits against the city and chemical manufacturers!

  6. Does that chemical have data for LONG TERM and how it affects people..

    When the BP oil situation happened a few months ago. BP was using chemicals to treat the oil…
    But, that chemical ( was told, don’t know it its true ) may help the oil , but kill the fish and then the poisoned fish are eaten by other fish and we have a toxic situation…

    its good that the govt is doing something, but what is the risk -vs- the reward

  7. Maybe someone can investigate who produces the chemical..

    If its Monsanto, nothing good should be expected.

    Probably the govt pays them ( TAX PAYERS $MONEY$) $100 a gallon for chemicals that they can get for $1 a gallon…

    Regarding those chemicals can be related to pharmaceutical drugs..
    Helps the kidney, but destroys the liver
    Helps the heart, but destroys your vessels
    and etc..

    This chemical may help with the west Nile.
    But, at what cost to the population..

    is the chemical they spray$FILE/S%20432-667%20SCOURGE%2018%20+%2054%203-13-07.pdf
    its made by bayer?
    mmmm they used to sell us heroin 🙂 check out all their other controversies!
    shit looks really bad too.
    good to know our government loves to poison us.
    the people have to regain control of the system.
    even with all the technology we have right now, we are all completely separated from each other

  9. I don’t understand why you’d spread false information when the article above, which included attribution, directly contradicts what you say. Scourge is NOT the chemical that they spray, and Bayer is NOT involved.

    As the article states, it’s a product named Anvil 10+10 produced by Clark Mosquito Control, a much smaller company than Bayer.

    Here is the label for the chemical:
    Here is the Material Safety Data Sheet:
    Here is the EPA fact sheet for the active ingredient:

    And, since you seem to respect poorly sourced information backed only by the word of the bullshitter spewing it, here’s the wikipedia entry for it:

    Sunlight breaks the chemical down into virtually nothing, which is why they spray at night. The only cause of concern is if you have a pool left full in the spray area, since the chemical actually becomes stronger in water. You should change the water in your pool and rinse it out before using it again. Otherwise, these chemicals are not considered dangerous to humans unless you’re a child standing directly behind the spray jets on the truck. Sounds like something a couple of you may have done.

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