In 2000, West Nile virus appeared for the first time in Pennsylvania in birds, mosquitoes and a horse. To combat the spread of West Nile virus, which is transmitted by mosquitoes, Pennsylvania has developed a comprehensive network. This network, which covers 40 counties, includes trapping mosquitoes, collecting dead birds and monitoring horses, people and, in past years, sentinel chickens. Please explore our site to find out more about how you can help, to learn about West Nile virus or the latest surveillance update from your area.
Bti for Home Use
State DEP and county mosquito control professionals have been using Bti, a naturally occurring bacteria, to kill mosquito larvae for years. This material is now becoming widely available for you to buy and use yourself at home.
Bti can be purchased in small, donut-shaped form, often called "mosquito dunks", which are useful in small areas of standing water, such as a birdbath or small puddle of water that may gather in a low spot on your property. A granular form of Bti is available, and effective for larger areas, such as backyard ponds.
Bti can be purchased in many lawn and garden, outdoor supply, and home improvement stores. The great thing about this bacteria is that it kills only mosquito and black fly larvae. It is not harmful to people, pets, aquatic life (such as fish) or plants.
The best way to control mosquitoes is still to get rid of standing water on your property. And, make sure you follow all label instructions carefully if you use Bti at home.