Quarterly Newsletter and Updates
Is Your Pool Greener than our Background?
It is summer in Alameda County and that means the start of our Green Pools Program. While our program has changed over the years, the threat to public health is still the same, as unmaintained swimming pools can potentially produce millions of mosquitoes in a single month. In Alameda County there are over 19,000 swimming pools, and the vast majority are in good condition. Unfortunately, every year there are a few hundred that will require our attention and a visit from our technicians. When a resident has trouble maintaining clear water in the pool, we will visit and offer a few options to make sure the water does not become a mosquito habitat. We can place mosquito fish into the water, or use a short-term pesticide treatment. If you or a neighbor receives a notice, connect with us by phone or email. See a few examples of green or unmaintained pools below.
New Trustee: Hope Salzer
Hope Salzer joins our Board of Trustees for the City of Piedmont. Thank you to Andrew Mingst for his previous service on behalf of the city of Piedmont.
Yes, West Nile virus is still here
West Nile virus is a disease first detected in the United States in 1999, and has now become fully established in most states, including California. While West Nile virus is not in the news often, it is still a threat to public health. Most people who get West Nile virus will not display symptoms, but around 20 percent may experience fevers, chills, headaches and nausea. In some cases, the virus can attack the nervous system resulting in encephalitis and premature death.
The public can help limit the spread of West Nile virus in our community with regular mosquito prevention precautions such as tossing stagnant water to decrease locations for mosquitoes to produce, and by wearing long, loose clothing and mosquito repellent. Another way to limit WNV is to report dead birds to the Vector Bourne Disease Section within California Department of Public Health. Many birds, especially ravens, crows and songbirds, are vulnerable to West Nile virus, and they are often our first indicator the virus is circulating in an area. Birds are considered a reservoir for the virus, they can receive the virus from the bite of a mosquito, and then if they are bitten again, they can pass the virus on to another mosquito. Check out the graphic above to understand the transmission cycle. You can report the dead bird online on the California West Nile Virus Webpage or by calling 1-877-968-2473.
Social Media Moment
During summer we often receive calls about other flying insects near the marsh which residents mistake for mosquitoes. In response to this need, we developed this flyer to highlight common insects in the area and to reiterate our purpose.
Job Announcement: Mosquito Control Technician
We are seeking an exceptional entry or mid-career candidate who will be responsible for conducting a planned program of mosquito detection and control abatement, assist support staff and perform related work as required. This is a full time, permanent position.
To learn more, find the job description and application on our website under employment opportunities.
Public Events for Spring 2022*
June 4 San Leandro Cherry Parade in San Leandro
June 19 Juneteenth Festival in Berkeley
July 4 Independence Day Parade in Alameda
*events are subject to change. Check our website for the most up to date information
West Nile Virus Location Update
While Alameda County has not detected West Nile virus so far this year, it has been detected in our neighboring counties including Contra Costa and San Joaquin. As a best practice, our lab will test suitable dead birds for West Nile virus (WNV). If you come across a dead bird please report it online at www.westnile.ca.gov. Mosquitoes enjoy long warm days in the summer so preventative activities such as removing standing water, adding mosquito fish to ponds, troughs, and neglected swimming pools, reduce our risk of West Nile virus. Now is a great time to check for standing water in your yard and drain or cover anything that will hold water longer than 4 days. Visit our backyard checklist to see common places where mosquitoes produce.