Byers residents complain of "out-of-control" mosquitoes

Posted at 7:22 PM, Aug 16, 2016
and last updated 2016-08-16 21:22:58-04

BYERS, Colo. -- In the small town of Byers, the dead heat actually brings relief for residents. 

"They're awful, you walk outside and they just swarm all over ya," said resident, Agnes Cartsun of mosquitoes in the area. 

The middle of the day is the only time safe enough to leave the house, residents say.

"They've gotten twice as bad as they were before.  When they came back, they came back double," said Amanda Hull.

The little town has a big mosquito problem. Hull said it's partly because the town's fire department, which in years past has always sprayed for mosquitos, no longer can.

"There's a new law or something had changed that now they have to have someone who's certified to spray," Hull explained.  "They said they don't have anyone locally that's certified, but they'll have someone next year."

According to the state health department, so far this year, 16 people have tested positive for West Nile Virus, one of them has died.  Arapahoe County said it's set up four traps throughout the county, but the counts have been low. 

The county is in charge of mitigating open spaces, but it's up to individual cities and towns to come up with their own mosquito control plans -- Byers doesn't have one.

"We went out and bought foggers, mosquito foggers and we've sprayed.  That helps until you get the first rain," Hull said.

A spokesperson with the Tri-County Health Department said they send out crews to set up traps if they receive a complaint.  The last time they did that was in June, but they did say they would set more traps out in Byers after we contacted them Tuesday.