PITTSBURGH, July 21, 2011 /PR Newswire/ -- The Department of Environmental Protection will conduct aerial spraying of selected waterways in Northwest and Southwest Pennsylvania on Friday, July 22, to control black flies.
In the Northwest, spraying is tentatively scheduled along the Allegheny River and Conewango, Brokenstraw, French and Red Bank creeks in Clarion, Forest, Venango and Warren counties.
In the Southwest, the Conemaugh and Kiskiminetas rivers and Mahoning Creek in Armstrong, Indiana and Westmoreland counties are tentatively scheduled for treatment.
Spraying will be performed by helicopter and will depend upon weather conditions. DEP uses Bti, a naturally occurring bacterium, to target the larval stage of four specific human pest black fly species. This bacterium degrades quickly in the environment and does not harm the aquatic ecosystem, birds or other insects.
Treatments cannot occur during periods of heavy rain or when water levels are high because fast-moving water can carry away the spray product, making the treatment ineffective.
DEP is notifying county and local emergency management officials about Friday's spraying activity to make them aware that helicopters seen flying over creeks, streams and rivers are working on behalf of the state's black fly program.
This year, 47 rivers and streams spanning more than 1,600 miles will be monitored and treated as needed. Other waterways will be treated as current and weather conditions allow.
For more information on Pennsylvania's Black Fly Suppression Program, visit www.depweb.state.pa.us, keyword Black Fly.
Freda Tarbell, 814-332-6615
Katy Gresh, 717-787-1323
SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection