State Plans to Spray for Mosquitoes Tonight In Gaithersburg and Wheaton

Aedes triseriatus mosquito PHOTO | CDC/ Robert S. Craig

Aedes triseriatus mosquito
PHOTO | CDC: Robert S. Craig

UPDATED The Maryland Department of Agriculture is expanding its mosquito control services in two areas of Montgomery County tonight due to a public health concern over the potential for mosquito-borne diseases, including the West Nile virus and the Zika virus.

Julie Oberg, the agriculture department’s communications director, said that mosquito control truck-based spraying will take place tonight, weather permitting, in the Wheaton area of Kensington and the Olde Town area of Gaithersburg. Originally, Oberg said that the Sandy Spring area would be included in tonight’s spraying but she says that information has been revised.

This is the first time the state has sprayed in Montgomery County when it’s not part of a community’s contract, said Montgomery County spokesperson Mary Anderson. “This is a state of Maryland plan,” she added.

Spraying will begin around 7:30 p.m. Any existing spray exemptions in the area will be temporarily suspended. People should avoid outdoor activities on spray nights. As a follow up, within approximately 24 to 48 hours of the spraying, state and local inspectors will go door-to-door in the area to inspect properties for mosquito breeding sites and will conduct backyard spraying, as needed, to further reduce adult mosquito populations.

According to a Department of Agriculture news release, it is critical that residents continue to survey their properties and their communities and eliminate or treat mosquito breeding sites, which includes emptying all containers of water around the home and yard.

As of Aug. 17, there were 64 cases of travel-related Zika virus in the state of Maryland, according to the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene.

For more information, including: Frequently Asked Questions, 30-second videos on how to control mosquitoes around the home, tips on how to rid your community of mosquito breeding sites, and tips on how to avoid mosquito bites, visit:

You can also follow the department’s new Twitter feed @MdAgMosquito that will post unscheduled spray events and other timely information about mosquito control in Maryland.

For more information, call the Maryland Department of Agriculture’s Mosquito Control Program at 410.841.5870 or the Montgomery County Department of Health and Human Services’ Disease Control Office at 240.777.1755.

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Sonya Burke

About Sonya Burke

Sonya Burke is the Multimedia Manager at Montgomery Community Media (MCM). You can email story ideas at or reach her on Twitter @SonyaNBurke.


19 Responses to “State Plans to Spray for Mosquitoes Tonight In Gaithersburg and Wheaton”

  1. Avatar
    On August 22, 2016 at 2:59 pm responded with... #

    What is the “Wheaton area of Kensington”? those are bordering communities. what specific area is being sprayed?

    • Avatar
      On August 22, 2016 at 8:39 pm responded with... #

      this is criminal and should be illegal

      • Avatar
        On August 23, 2016 at 9:51 am responded with... #

        It’s already been proven that the benefits of the chemicals outweigh the harm these mosquitoes cause . People who are hyping up the chemical talk need to just stop. You’re breathing, eating and taking them into your skin every single day in our world, especially in our crowded state and you don’t even know it. The rare few who have a true physical problem with chemicals move to isolated areas that have their own different chemicals. Smh. Also, vaccinate your kids and stop putting everyone else at risk!!!

        Side note: it’s interesting the state is spraying the wealthy areas (Kensington, Gaithersburg). did they already spray the rest of Montgomery County or are they getting to those folks eventually? Because I’m pretty sure “the Wheaton area of Kensington” is code for “only Kensington but we don’t want to you think we’re neglecting people of Wheaton.”

  2. Avatar
    On August 22, 2016 at 3:02 pm responded with... #

    Does this concern anyone else? Spraying toxic chemicals without telling them in advance? Who is next? What are the real risks of Zika virus? And if we don’t have cases of Zika virus, or the mosquito that carries it, why are we spraying for it?

    • Avatar
      On August 22, 2016 at 5:06 pm responded with... #

      Yes, this concerns me! Why does the government think they have a right to poison our air when all Zika cases are from people traveling elsewhere. This is horrible, and should be criminal. Studies prove that pesticides and these kinds of toxins cause cancer in people.

      • Avatar
        On August 23, 2016 at 11:31 pm responded with... #

        What chemicals are these, exactly? Do you have any clue what you are talking about?

    • Avatar
      On August 22, 2016 at 7:58 pm responded with... #

      YES! I’m way more concerned about the toxic chemicals that DO cause problems than I am about Zika which MAY cause problems and still has not actually been proven to be the issue. Perhaps the issue in Brazil were all the incredibly toxic chemicals they use and NOT a virus which has been known of since the 50s.

      • Avatar
        On August 22, 2016 at 9:12 pm responded with... #

        YOU BET I’M CONCERNED…Where in the “Wheaton area of Kensington” are they spraying and how dare them not do a better job of outreach…my phone has blown up since I returned this eve from folks asking

      • Avatar
        On August 23, 2016 at 11:33 pm responded with... #

        You sound very uneducated on this topic… Can you tell me what you are talking about, with regards to chemicals in Brazil causing more harm than Zika?

  3. Avatar
    On August 22, 2016 at 6:21 pm responded with... #

    Any idea of they’ll be spraying the Olney area? And if so…when?

  4. Avatar
    On August 22, 2016 at 8:58 pm responded with... #

    “Wheaton area of Kensington”? Do they mean the northern part of Kensington that borders Wheaton or the southern part of Wheaton that borders Kensington… or both?

  5. Avatar
    On August 22, 2016 at 9:26 pm responded with... #

    In the Gaithersburg area the spraying area is between West Diamond, I270 and Muddy Branch. I worry that people in that area won’t realize the State thinks they live in Olde Towne Gaithersburg.

  6. Avatar
    On August 22, 2016 at 10:32 pm responded with... #

    I don’t know how to tell you guys this but chemicals are everywhere. This chemicalphobia crap needs to stop. It’s not a big freaking deal.

    • Avatar
      On August 23, 2016 at 7:49 am responded with... #

      Who are you? Why do you need us to get over the fact that we are absorbing poison. Have you heard of science? Chemicals cause cell mutations. The larger the dose, the more reaction. Care about life, or at least Drop the smug attitude.

      • Avatar
        On August 23, 2016 at 2:20 pm responded with... #

        Bethany… who are YOU? Tell us, please, how you have been affected by the supposed;y deadly chemicals we’ve been all breathing in and eating for so many years. Some people ARE affected, most not. some who claim to be affected go to their doctors who prescribe them MORE chemicals. We live in a sick society. But as of yet, it would be completely irresponsible for states and our country to ignore thinks like the Zika virus and simply do nothing about it. There’s no epidemic of people dying of chemical sprays to control insects. There are, however, people dying and babies being born with a host of horrible problems from Zika and other insects.

        I think it’s YOU who needs to brush up on your science… and YOU who needs to drop the smug attitude.

      • Avatar
        On August 23, 2016 at 11:39 pm responded with... #

        Why don’t you enlighten us with some fact based evidence. Perhaps you could link to a study? It’s pretty hard to argue with such a broad and absurd claim such as “chemicals cause cell mutations”… Do you know what a chemical is? Do you know what a “cell mutation” is?

        Chemicals cause every facet of life. Cell mutations are responsible for so so so many things, good and bad. You can’t just make a claim that cell mutations = cancer and chemicals = cell mutations… That’s complete nonsense. Why do you feel so strongly about something you have no understanding of?

  7. Avatar
    On August 23, 2016 at 8:52 am responded with... #

    Kona, do you even know what you are talking about? There are 80,000 chemicals in the country. Many, if not most are unregulated. Start reading some peer reviewed studies on the effects of these chemicals in humans, especially children.

    • Avatar
      On August 23, 2016 at 11:41 pm responded with... #

      What is this nonsense? What are you even talking about, on particular? I guarantee you any chemicals the state or county is spraying are indeed regulated.

  8. Avatar
    On August 23, 2016 at 10:04 am responded with... #

    All you ladies freaked out by the spraying: educate yourselves on the Zika virus… stop blaming “the government” and showing outrage because of your ignorance. Don’t let Maryland turn into ignorant states like NC because your first inclination is to go all Trump on a public forum. There have been news programs and article after article explaining the Zika situation and what harm that virus causes. For goodness sake, at least do a google search!

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