County continues application for black fly treatment

By Chris Cooper -

The county opened the only bid received for treating black flies in Logan County at the Tuesday, March 22 fiscal court meeting. Enscience, a locally run company, operated by Mark Hopkins, was awarded the job once again. Hopkins has been treating the Red River and Whipporwill Creek for the flies the past few years.

Hopkins’s bid was the same as it has been for the past few years, which is $750 a day for no more that 17 days of treatment. Magistrates are hoping the state’s Agricultural Department will continue to fund most of the treatment materials. The state who has had some success over the last year with an initial large application. Any additional treatments have been applied by Enscience.

The black fly problem has mostly plagued the southern portion of Logan County. The flies have been reduced greatly over the past four years after the fiscal court decided to begin treating the waterways to help battle the fly problem that generated numerous complaints. At one point the flies were so bad citizens could not go outside without be bombarded by the pesky creature.

Enscience treats the Red River, Whippoorwill Creek and Little Whippoorwill Creek in attempts to control the fly population. The material used to treat the waterways is Bacillus thuringienisis israelensis (Bti), a biological material specifically designed to target black fly larva. The material is non-toxic to humans, mammals, birds, fish, plants and most invertebrates when properly applied. It is used worldwide to control black flies and mosquitoes without harming non-target organisms. The chemical is applied by pouring it into the waterways.

The treatment, says Hopkins, will not get rid of the flies all together. The treatment is not designed to be an eradication program, but a suppression program. It is not possible to do away with the fly completely. They have been in this area for hundreds of years and will most likely continue. It’s lowering the population that Hopkins is trying to accomplish.

By Chris Cooper

To contact Chris Cooper, email or call 270-726-8394.

To contact Chris Cooper, email or call 270-726-8394.

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