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Eastern Kings Community Fly Program: (EKC F/P)

 

 

Mandate:

The Eastern Kings Community Fly Program’s mandate is to: control the mosquito and black fly populations while keeping the area protected from diseases often transmitted by these flies; keep the outdoor living areas as comfortable as possible for its local citizens, visitors, pets and animals; provide training and education for both the workers and citizens to help them control these biting flies around homes, in fields and woodland areas, in a safe and eco-friendly manner while providing this service in the safest and cost efficient way.

 

History:

The Eastern Kings Fly Program started 28 years ago to combat the pestering of these annoying, sometimes dangerous flies. Before this program, during peak seasons, many people were forced to sprint from their cars to their homes because of swarming, aggressive, blood-sucking creatures. Some people were forced to seek medical help from reactions caused by bites they received from so many flies, even though outdoor exposure was no more than a few seconds. This ruined the spring and summer months for numerous locals and visitors of all ages and created health risks. Many people could not get out during the daylight hours to absorb sunshine which is needed to acquire the proper amounts of vitamin D for healthy living. This Fly Program has brought the majority of these local fly species under control, allowing much of the Eastern Kings area to become a more enjoyable, liveable outdoor space.  However, the work goes on, it requires continuous prevention techniques to keep these pests at bay and research to keep the battle with nature safe and balanced. This program can and is working but it requires the diligence of everyone to do their part to get the best results, to make the spring and summer months comfortable and safe for our children, visitors, pets, animals and ourselves.

 

How the Fly Program works:

The Eastern Kings Fly program is run through the Community Council as a community service program. It is designed to keep its citizens and visitors as free as possible from disease, harmful reactions and discomfort from these biting pests.  Over the past 28 years, this program has developed into one of the most efficient in the province, balancing results with safety. The identification and understanding of these pests is essential because selecting and using the appropriate control measures is important to everyone’s health and the environment. At present, the council has two, trained and experienced local citizens hired seasonally to assess the various ponds, streams and wetlands, and deliver the needed treatment in this community’s area. These two workers also evaluate private and public grounds giving help to owners on how to control problem areas and administer treatment when needed to control out-breaks which affect the public.

The workers begin in late March, scouring and pin-pointing areas that show signs of blackfly and mosquito life. When given the go ahead by the council they start to treat those areas first, to get ahead of any outbreaks. Much depends on the weather and if the program starts early enough to control the flies before they become a nuisance otherwise the job becomes a game of catch-up. The team now has the use of an all-terrain vehicle which helps them get deeper into the woods. Over the past two years, they have mapped and treated many more areas then previously possible. The team also developed a way of packaging the application granules into nuggets, which they catapult or slingshot into the centre of wetlands; places where they cannot get access to by buggy, boat or on foot. Over the years this program has brought the blackfly and mosquito population down in most areas. There are still areas where the team is working on solutions that are hard to control such as: inaccessible deep, large spread marshes, personal property that is not kept clean of breeding grounds, blackflies and mosquitos invading from regions that don’t have fly programs, and unidentified species of mosquitos.

The team of workers and the community council have brought the cost of the program down over the years by streamlining the work; early detection, early treatment, educating and taking personal-time to work at the program. 

  

Costs and why: 

  • Workers’ Wages: (Two workers are presently employed. However as of 2015 the program will expand back to the original format of four workers for safety and faster coverage of the area. As the workers must travel in twos for safety, coyotes and accidents are the main concerns, one team of two cannot cover enough ground to keep all areas comfortable.) 

  • 4-Wheeler maintenance/gas/storage: (Aids in traveling quickly to starting points in the woods, where ordinary vehicles can’t go, this allows the workers to use their walking time more efficiently along the ponds, marshes and streams)

  • Equipment:  (Skiff & trailer, maps. GPS, axes, chainsaw, winch, walkie-talkies etc…)

  • Treatments and storage: (Purchase of VectoBac liquids, granules, Mosquito Less and flour)

     

     Research needed and why:

  • More research is needed to control some species. (Unidentified mosquito species cannot be controlled without using dangerous chemicals; not used by the EKC F/P.)

  •  Global warming is a concern, as this can lead to more dangerous diseases moving north.

  • Ongoing research to find better more efficient products to control these pests.

     

    How you can help and make your outdoor living space safer, more comfortable:  

    It is important that each person helps in the control of these annoying, potentially dangerous biting insects by clean-up personal property and public places, even the smallest changes can make big differences in these insect populations.

    Things that can help:            Change the water in birdbaths daily

                                                     Cover water barrels

                                                     Check and empty any water that accumulates in:

                                                                        Old tires, eaves troughs, holes in tree, buckets, children’s toys etc…

                                                     Cover wading & swimming pools

                                                     

    Conclusion:

    This program strives to be environmentally sound and full-fill its mandate to protect all humans and nature.

  

For more information contact: 

 

Eastern Kings Community Fly Program 

Email: easternkingspe@gmail.com    Fax: 902-357-2607 

Phone: 902-357-2894