Effect of Spraying Mosquitoes on Macroinvertebrates in Spring Creek, Laramie, WY

Wurzel, Sarah
Many local governments have mosquito control programs to prevent West Nile Virus throughout the community. The pesticides administered in each city may not target mosquitoes exclusively. In Laramie, the broad adulticide sprayed in the air settled into Spring Creek where a variety of aquatic invertebrates live. We sampled invertebrates with a Hess sampler and drift nets at two sites along Spring Creek. Drift samples were collected before, immediately after, and a day after application. We collected two pre-application and two-post application samples with the Hess sampler. Diversity and abundance of invertebrates increased in post-application drift samples. We are currently processing benthic samples and worms, nematodes, ostracods, and Baetis mayflies are abundant in benthic samples. We will present our results to date on how the invertebrate community differs before and after application during the summer. Determining the effects of mosquito pesticide on the Spring Creek invertebrates will inform the city's future mosquito control program and allow managers to make informed decisions. A better understanding of pesticides' effects gives us the opportunity to protect people from West Nile Virus while minimizing the effects on aquatic ecosystems.
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