Kanata North Mosquito Program Update

July 19, 2023


The Kanata North Office has received a lot of questions regarding the 2023 Kanata North Mosquito Control Program over the last 2 weeks, so I thought it would be helpful to provide a specific Mosquito Program Update.

We are in constant communication with the company administering the program, GDG Environment, and I wanted to share a message from them below.

The situation experienced in Kanata North this summer is found throughout Eastern Canada. As you know, the amount of rain and weather conditions are exceptional. Last week there was two confirmed tornadoes in Ottawa. With all the storms and high winds, the treated areas are infected with mosquitoes from further afield than usual. Since the beginning, we have done all the work necessary to obtain the best results for the population. Our field workers are attentive to their work, and they are the first to feel the nuisance of mosquitoes when doing monitoring and treatments.

All the indicators in Eastern Canada are showing higher mosquito population. With this high density, more mosquitoes from the untreated area will migrate to the protected area. The number of residual mosquitoes (a small percentage missed by treatment) is also higher when the initial larval population is dense.

Kanata North is surrounded by major wetlands that contain great biodiversity. Among this diversity, more than 44 mosquito species are well established in the catchment basin, and some of those are exotic and invasive. The high-water table and the flat topography create a haven for mosquito reproduction and favour the creation of large mosquito development sites, many of which remain flooded throughout the season. The surface area of the treatment zone in Kanata North is approximately 6,053 hectares (ha) to protect an area of 1825 hectares.

The spring treatment focuses on three aggressive mosquito species that emerge after snowmelt in non-permanent and permanent standing water sites. The summer treatments focus on two aggressive mosquito species that emerge either after significant rainfall, or when the Carp River rises. A special treatment is also done for a species of mosquito whose larvae develop attached to the roots of cattail plants.

The mosquito control program uses a biological larvicide called Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis (Bti). We also use Bacillus sphaericus (Bsph). Since we are conducting a biological program, we only use biological larvicides. We don’t use chemical adulticides. Our local team is monitoring larval development stages and sequencing the treatments based on the larval surveillance data results. The biological larvicide (Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis (Bti) and Bacillus sphaericus (Bsph)) application is carried out by helicopter, drone, and ground teams.

In Kanata, we are used to working with heavy rain and all kinds of weather. Frequent light rain showers over the last several days reanimated the production of mosquitoes by the Carp River. With the many light rains we have been experiencing lately, larvae and pupae have been swept from Kanata South to Kanata North during processing.

We want to reassure the citizens that we are present on the field every week. We do all the treatments necessary. The drone and helicopter are available when we need their support. But in these exceptional circumstances, although we did all the work necessary, there are still many mosquitoes out there. We will continue monitoring and treatment to ensure a reduction of the mosquito population in the protected area.

I do believe that there is a misunderstanding by some residents how the program works. It is very important to note that this spraying of mosquitos is a preventative measure that impacts mosquito larvae to reduce their population by targeting mosquito larva found in wetlands to prevent hatching. The reduction in larvae then reduces the amount that become adult mosquitoes. The program does not impact/kill the adult mosquito population. When spraying is being done, it is not killing the mosquitos that are currently flying around. This is important to know because a solution is not found overnight after spraying, which I believe some residents who have reached out to our office believe.

I have also received questions surrounding whether the Mosquito Program is still on this year. After reading this letter, you can see that it is. Every homeowner received a letter in the mail mid-March sharing information that preparations for the 2023 Kanata North Mosquito Control Program were underway and that spraying would start in April. I will note that this is the last year of a 4-year contract for the program running from 2020-2023. The Kanata North Office has started to look at the preparations needed to let residents decide by vote if they want there to be another Mosquito Program contract signed.

Please continue to reach out to GDG at info.mosquito@gdg.ca or by telephone at 1-877-227-0552 and make sure to include your name, address, and phone number. These complaints are taken into account when looking at how effective the last spray was and what could have impacted it, as well as what steps need to be taken for the next spray to address specific areas.

Please do not hesitate to reach out to the Kanata North Office if you have any questions.