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  #1  
Old 12 February 2008, 09:24 PM
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Icon23 No flies at Disneyland

Comment: I heard a rumor that Disneyland in Southern CA releases a
"fly-eating" bacteria in and around the park so that there are no flies in
the park. Is this true?
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  #2  
Old 13 February 2008, 08:25 PM
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Wow, snopes, how many questions like these so you get each day? Incredible.

Maybe D-L has no flies because they keep the place really clean?
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Old 13 February 2008, 08:47 PM
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Even if this is true (which it is not, I know for a fact) I would think that mosquitoes would be a bigger issues than flies.
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Old 13 February 2008, 09:04 PM
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There are currently no bacterial products registered for house fly control (assuming that is what is meant by the questioner). There is a bacterial product registered for use on other flies, such as mosquitoes, midges, black flies and fungus gnats (Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis) and Bacillus sphaericus is labeled for control of culicine mosquitoes. In any case, these are really only effective on the larvae and kill by forming crystals under high pH that rupture the gut lining. These may be confused with something used for house fly control
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Old 13 February 2008, 09:56 PM
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I one killed a fly at Disneyland... or I thought I did. When I looked, I saw that its guts were really wires and tiny actuators, and there was a Disney Imagineering nameplate on it.

At any rate, I don't see how Audio-Animatronic flies could possibly be affected by bacteria, so I say no, this couldn't possibly be true.

Wonko

hmmm... audio-animatronic bacteria? May have to rethink this...
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  #6  
Old 13 February 2008, 11:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by diddy View Post
Even if this is true (which it is not, I know for a fact) I would think that mosquitoes would be a bigger issues than flies.
Not in this part of the world. Mosquitoes aren't really much of a problem around here.

- snopes
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  #7  
Old 14 February 2008, 04:30 AM
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"Mosquitoes aren't really much of a problem around here."

That would be on account of your tax dollars going to mosquito abatement which goes on wherever there are lakes, ditches and standing water. The mosquito abatement gets 'em by making their preferred egg-laying sites (any still water) inhospitable.
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Old 14 February 2008, 04:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rosa who else View Post
"Mosquitoes aren't really much of a problem around here."

That would be on account of your tax dollars going to mosquito abatement which goes on wherever there are lakes, ditches and standing water. The mosquito abatement gets 'em by making their preferred egg-laying sites (any still water) inhospitable.
This is Southern California. Except for immediately after substantial rainstorms, there aren't a whole lot of standing pools of water around here.

- snopes
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Old 14 February 2008, 01:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snopes View Post
Not in this part of the world. Mosquitoes aren't really much of a problem around here.

- snopes
You have a point, I haven't been to southern California since I was in my real early teens so my memory might have been flawed. Perhaps I was thinking Disneyworld in my head while thinking mosquito's since I have a tendency to got the parks locations screwed up (yes I am aware the OP mentions S CA).
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  #10  
Old 14 February 2008, 02:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snopes View Post
This is Southern California. Except for immediately after substantial rainstorms, there aren't a whole lot of standing pools of water around here.

- snopes
You'd be surprised at how many unnoticed pools or containers of water there are around you, especially in areas were people do a lot of lawn irrigation.

If a mosquito control program has a good larvicide unit, most of its work will be effectively "out of sight" and not noticed by the public.

California has historically been among the leaders for introducing new mosquito control ideas and techniques.
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Old 14 February 2008, 05:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rlobinske View Post
You'd be surprised at how many unnoticed pools or containers of water there are around you, especially in areas were people do a lot of lawn irrigation.

If a mosquito control program has a good larvicide unit, most of its work will be effectively "out of sight" and not noticed by the public.

California has historically been among the leaders for introducing new mosquito control ideas and techniques.
This is all probably true but Disneyland is in Anaheim, the climate is mediterranean. The total yearly rainfall of about 14 inches is not that far above a desert (normally considered to be less than 10"/year). Given the relatively high temperature and low humidity that occurs throughout the year there are very few "unnoticed pools or containers of water" around that last long enough for mosquitoes to breed.

In the 8 years or so I lived in Pasadena (~30 miles NW of Anaheim), I don't recall ever seeing a mosquito or any kind of eradication efforts.
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  #12  
Old 14 February 2008, 06:02 PM
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Quote:
You'd be surprised at how many unnoticed pools or containers of water there are around you, especially in areas were people do a lot of lawn irrigation.

Dude, pools & water-front property is prime real estate in SoCal. Mosquitoes just can afford it.

Same for the admission to Disneyland.
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  #13  
Old 15 February 2008, 06:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snopes View Post
Not in this part of the world. Mosquitoes aren't really much of a problem around here.

- snopes
Neither are flies, which might partially explain the OP.
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  #14  
Old 15 February 2008, 01:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmy101_again View Post
This is all probably true but Disneyland is in Anaheim, the climate is mediterranean. The total yearly rainfall of about 14 inches is not that far above a desert (normally considered to be less than 10"/year). Given the relatively high temperature and low humidity that occurs throughout the year there are very few "unnoticed pools or containers of water" around that last long enough for mosquitoes to breed.

In the 8 years or so I lived in Pasadena (~30 miles NW of Anaheim), I don't recall ever seeing a mosquito or any kind of eradication efforts.
That means you won't have the widespread problem such as in Florida, but they are still there. As I mentioned, especially when there is a lot of domestic irrigation, which I bet happens in the dry climate you describe. Mosquitoes only need a small amount of water, only a couple tablespoons in some cases and maybe four or five days during a warm summer to go from egg to adult. That means plant saucers, birdbaths, pet dishes and other small containers that can be regularly filled by human irrigation activity, just as a couple of examples.

A dry climate usually will support a lot of floodwater type mosquitoes, those that survive dry periods as eggs and hatch when they are flooded, such as after a heavy rain. The generation will be synchronized and you will get large numbers appear at one time. They will breed and lay new eggs to wait for the next heavy rain event.

Anaheim would either be in the Greater Los Angeles County Vector Control District or the Los Angeles County West Vector & Vector-Borne Disease Control District. Both of these are large and well-funded operations, indicating that there is a considerable need for mosquito control in the area. Many people primarily associate adulticiding (truck or aerial spraying) with mosquito control and assume that if they don't see that, there is little or no activity occurring. A good larviciding program will often be almost invisible to the general public since the work is done quietly during the day when most people are otherwise busy and often in places that people don't often go to. In my program, about 85% of our efforts are larval control, but greater than 90% of citizen feedback is about the adult control portion of the program.

Last edited by rlobinske; 15 February 2008 at 01:23 PM.
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  #15  
Old 15 February 2008, 06:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rlobinske View Post
Anaheim would either be in the Greater Los Angeles County Vector Control District or the Los Angeles County West Vector & Vector-Borne Disease Control District. Both of these are large and well-funded operations, indicating that there is a considerable need for mosquito control in the area. Many people primarily associate adulticiding (truck or aeri...
I think you are using what has to be done in Florida to control mosquitoes to predict what is typically done in greater LA. I'm sure there are controls and programs but they are not anything like what is done in Florida. The lack of observable mosquitoes in LA is not because of highly effective control programs, it is because of the climate.

Besides, it doesn't matter how much money is spent by the gov't to control larva or eggs, they aren't walking into peoples yards to spray their birdbaths, or dog water bowls, or any of the other stagnant water that results from, say, watering the lawn.
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  #16  
Old 15 February 2008, 07:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmy101_again View Post
I think you are using what has to be done in Florida to control mosquitoes to predict what is typically done in greater LA. I'm sure there are controls and programs but they are not anything like what is done in Florida. The lack of observable mosquitoes in LA is not because of highly effective control programs, it is because of the climate.

Besides, it doesn't matter how much money is spent by the gov't to control larva or eggs, they aren't walking into peoples yards to spray their birdbaths, or dog water bowls, or any of the other stagnant water that results from, say, watering the lawn.
You're comment about "walking into peoples yards" shows that you are still under the impression that visible operations represent total operations and miss my point that most of the larval control activities are not noticed by the general population. Overall, control operations strive for this kind of invisibility. If they do their jobs well, they are not noticed and the citizens don't worry about mosquitoes since they rarely encounter them.
I've reviewed the published programs and yes, we are using much of the same techniques, just different combinations and with different timing. Any given geographic area has to have a custom-fitted mosquito control program to be effective. One size does not fit all. The So-Cal programs look to be, as I suspected, geared to work with floodwater mosquitoes and container breeding mosquitoes. They high preference for biological and biorational control at the larval end, using the bacterial products I mentioned in my first post, insect growth regulators and predatory fish introductions. These are used in more than residential yards, including stormwater structures, natural (what few remain) larval habitats and many man-made near-natural habitats found in places like parks.

Yes, the climate is different, so the mix of mosquito species is not the same and the population dynamics are different, but trust me, it's not climate alone that is controlling the mosquitoes. The drier climate means that there are fewer, continuous mosquito populations, which I've already mentioned. That does not mean that the area is free of mosquitoes. Considering the 36 human cases of West Nile Encephalitis and 91 positive mosquito pools in LA county last year, there are sufficient mosquitoes present to transmit the virus from wild bird populations to humans and good evidence that the climate alone is not controlling the mosquito population.

Last edited by rlobinske; 15 February 2008 at 07:14 PM. Reason: clarifications
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  #17  
Old 15 February 2008, 08:14 PM
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Correction, Disneyland would be under Orange County Vector Control and it looks like they have a 100% larval control program.
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  #18  
Old 15 February 2008, 08:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rlobinske View Post
You're comment about "walking into peoples yards" shows that you are still under the impression that visible operations represent total operations and miss my point that most of the larval control activities are not noticed by the general population. Overall, control operations strive for this kind of invisibility. If they do their jobs well, they are not noticed and the citizens don't worry about mosquitoes since they rarely encounter them.
You can't control larval populations unless you get to the significant breeding grounds. In greater LA there are almost no natural standing water pools. The stormwater system (aka the "LA River") is basically a concrete ditch that was designed to be self draining and is probably dry 85% of the year (except for a small runoff channel that is supposed to be constantly flowing and is meant to handle the trivial amount of water that runs of landscaping etc.) So, I can't see any way that ongoing efforts (beyond the design of the stormwater systems) can have a significant affect on the mosquito population.

The only significant breeding pools would be dog water dishes, bird baths etc. To affect those breeding locations would require "walking into peoples yards". I do not believe that is done in LA.

The lack of a significant mosquito population in LA has much more to do with the climate than it does the control effort.
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  #19  
Old 16 February 2008, 05:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rlobinske View Post
Correction, Disneyland would be under Orange County Vector Control and it looks like they have a 100% larval control program.
Thanks for the link rlobinske. I frequently see signs in parks around here (especially those close to the coast) warning that mosquitoes carrying West Nile Virus have been captured in the area. So, yes we have mosquitoes but, no, we don't have even 10% of the amount they do in the south.
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Old 17 February 2008, 08:44 PM
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We have a charge on our utility bill for mosquito and rodent control, which covers the trucks that spray the neighborhoods during the summer. My subdivision has a small lake, and I'm close to a creek, but I didn't see any mosquitoes when I was outside (I usually do stuff around dusk, after work).
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