Two chunks of Miami-Dade County are scheduled to get coated with the mosquito-killing pesticide naled early Monday.
The mist will be deployed by plane between 12:01 and 5:30 a.m. and will cover an area east of U.S. 1, starting south of the Rickenbacker Causeway and going as far as Florida City. The spraying will continue down the coast before veering off and following U.S. 1 into Homestead.
A separate swath of land in western Miami-Dade County, from Tamiami Trail to Southwest 160th Street, bordered on the west by Krome Avenue and on the east by Southwest 137th Avenue, will also be sprayed.
The affected communities include Homestead, Florida City, Redland, West Kendall, Cutler Bay, Palmetto Bay, Pinecrest, South Miami, Coral Gables and Miami, as well as parts of unincorporated Miami-Dade County.
The spraying is a result of an increased number of phone calls to the county’s Department of Solid Waste Management, which oversees the control of Miami-Dade’s mosquito population, and an increase in the number of mosquitoes caught in traps.
As of Friday afternoon, the department had received 1,064 calls about mosquitoes within the last week, according to county spokeswoman Gayle Love, despite spraying for mosquitoes on June 16.
The target of this round of fogging is the black salt marsh mosquito, which is known as a nuisance biter rather than a disease carrier. But the naled used to kill them also kills bees, butterflies and bats, among other pollinators, and is banned in the European Union.
The pesticide has also been linked to a delay in motor function among a group of Chinese babies whose mothers were exposed to naled, and its use has been criticized by environmentalists as well South Miami Mayor Phil Stoddard. He advised families with young children and families that are expecting a baby to leave the affected areas prior to the June 16 spraying.
The county contends naled is approved by the Environmental Protection Agency and that it follows all guidelines regarding dosage and application.
Nevertheless, Love said the county will call all landlines in the affected areas on Saturday and again on Sunday to let residents know about the spraying.
The county will also call all beekeepers in the area to let them know to cover up their hives, she said. In addition, the county offers a service where anyone can opt into a program that will notify them every time the county is planning to spray.
“We make a call to anyone who wants a call,” Love said.
To sign up, call 311.
If the spraying can’t be done Monday because of bad weather, it will be rescheduled for Tuesday at the same time.