Agriculture Press Release

June 5, 1998

Crawford Takes Steps To Minimize Impact Of Aerial Spraying

TALLAHASSEE -- Florida Agriculture Commissioner Bob Crawford has announced that he will delay aerial spraying of Medfly infested Manatee County until the school year is over on Wednesday, June 10. The decision comes in response to requests from parents in Manatee County. Crawford has also decided that aerial treatment will take place only at night to minimize the inconvenience to the public.

"While it is absolutely necessary to eradicate the Medfly, I am also committed to responding to citizen concerns during this eradication program," Crawford said.

Weather permitting, the first of three scheduled aerial bait spray treatments over the 50-square-mile eradication zone will begin at 10 p.m. Wednesday, June 10, and should conclude by 6 a.m. Thursday morning.

"Residents of Bradenton and Palmetto have been outstanding in their cooperation with this program, particularly in their efforts to collect and properly dispose of host fruit and vegetables," Crawford said. "But those and our own aggressive efforts have not eliminated the problem. I know all the residents in this area agree that our ability to provide wholesome, maggot-free fresh fruits and vegetables is too important to be compromised."

Agriculture officials are advising residents in the eradication zone to take the following
precautions during the aerial treatment:

  • Stay inside during aerial treatment to minimize exposure.
  • Wash skin with soap and water if it comes into contact with treatment bait.
  • Cover or wash vehicles exposed to the treatment bait.
  • Cover or turn over exposed pet food bowls, bird feeders and baths, and small pools.
  • Cover fish ponds. Remove covers immediately afterward to maintain sufficient
    oxygen levels for fish.
  • As always, wash home-grown vegetables and fruits before eating and storing them.


For More Information:
Liz Compton
(850) 488-3022

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