Mosquito Spraying for entire town of Berthoud stopped for Summer 2018!

After two long years of fighting against a town policy that allowed our properties to be sprayed without our consent, the most recent town Board majority opted to withhold spraying until after summer is over to discuss measures to tackle the mosquito issue for Summer 2019.

Important questions were asked at the July 24th meeting by both citizens and town officials.  Questions about property rights, health concerns and what really constitutes an emergency spray were asked.  This new board also brought in an experienced mitigator of Integrated Pest Management to speak of pesticide concerns in particular, with our ecological systems.

The video is listed below so that other towns that are fighting this same issue can take this information to educate their officials (start video at 7 minutes 56 seconds).

We applaud all efforts made possible to overturn this spraying decision enacted back in 2016.

But the fight won’t stop here.  We plan on attending additional meetings in the future to ensure that facts are being given, that our ecological systems aren’t harmed and that our health and property rights remain intact.

For those that are fighting this issue in your town, we have walked in your shoes and we encourage you to continue the fight!



Sign Our Petition to Let the Town of Berthoud know

I would like to invite you to sign a petition to be submitted to the Town Board of Berthoud regarding the issue of mosquito spraying.

Sign the petition! 

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Last August, the Town of Berthoud conducted an “Emergency Spraying” of pesticides over the entire town.  Unfortunately, it was not an emergency and toxic chemicals were sprayed putting at risk the environment, beneficial insects, animals and human health.

Additionally, shut-offs to chemically sensitive people were not honored and inadequate notice was provided to the citizens of Berthoud.   This decision compromised the risk of chemical exposure to our health (people were told to stay indoors during the spraying for at least 4 hours) and to our organic gardens (some people were out of town or unaware of the spray).  The spraying was triggered by a vague and poorly written resolution that was passed in 2015.

We believe the board has taken steps in the right direction.  During the March 28th Town Board meeting, a ¾ mile larvicide application perimeter around town was adopted to strengthen source reduction.  Larvicide is one of two of the strongest methods to get rid of diseased mosquitoes (the second is education) as noted by the Larimer County Department of Health and Colorado Mosquito Control.

Larvicide prevents mosquitoes from hatching by putting a naturally occurring bacterium in water areas where mosquitoes are known to breed.  This superior method strongly prevents the emergence of adult mosquitoes and WNV in our community.  Larviciding has successfully worked for 5 years here in Berthoud with only .001% of people reporting WNV in the entire area of Berthoud.  Out of the these reported cases, it is uncertain if they even contracted WNV in Berthoud, another town or state.

The only time that the Larimer County Department of Health has issued an emergency was in 2003 at the onset of WNV.  Spraying pesticides should only occur under true emergency conditions as deemed by CDC or Larimer County Department of Health.

The cities of Denver and Boulder successfully employ a Larvicide and Education only policy stating environmental and health concerns caused by spraying

We are requesting that you sign this petition in support of a strong larvicide program combined with public education about self-protection and source reduction on private property.   We are also requesting that you sign this petition in support of spraying to be done only when an emergency condition is declared and conducted by the Larimer County Department of Health.

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Sign the petition! 

What are we being exposed to?


The product is called Aqua-Kontrol 30-30.

First ingredient: Permethrin, which is a synthetic pesticide.  Very different from and much more toxic than the familiar pyrethrum made from chrysanthemum flowers.

Permethrin is neurotoxic and labeled as carcinogenic by the Environmental Protection Agency.  Permethrin primarily targets the nervous system, but is also harmful to other organ systems.

“Because permethrin caused lung tumors in female rats and liver tumors in male rats, the Environmental Protection Agency has labeled permethrin a carcinogen. Children are more susceptible to permethrin toxicity than adults. Early experiments discovered that permethrin targets the immune system and can cause a variety of illnesses, some of which occur in the reproductive organs, and cause permanent damage to the unborn fetus. Additionally, permethrin is a mutagen and can lead to chromosome abnormalities.”

Permethrin also has endocrine-disrupting properties:

Endocrine disruptors are chemicals that interfere with the communication system of glands, hormones, and cellular receptors that control the body’s internal functions. A relatively unique feature of endocrine disruptors is that they exert their effects at extremely low doses, even when higher doses exhibit no adverse effects. Disorders that have increased in prevalence in recent years such as unusual male gonadal development, infertility, ADHD, autism, intellectual impairment, diabetes, thyroid disorders, and childhood and/or adult cancers are now being linked to prenatal exposure to endocrine disruptors.

The second ingredient, Piperonyl Butoxide, is rarely mentioned, but is often referred to as the Trojan Horse of pesticide formulations. A known carcinogen, PBO is added to impair the immune function of the insects so that the permethrin can circulate longer inside the body and do more damage to the nervous system.  It does this by blocking enzyme function.  Piperonyl butoxide is listed as an irreversible enzyme inhibitor – the most toxic kind.

And there are the petroleum distillates and the undisclosed “inert ingredients” that make up more than 40% of the formula.  These inert ingredients are often more toxic than the active ingredients, especially in combination with PBO.  Shouldn’t we be allowed to know what is being sprayed into our environment?  Why are these ingredients “proprietary?”

To be effective, a drop of pesticide has to come into direct contact with a mosquito.  For every drop of toxic spray that actually reaches a mosquito, thousands of drops drift through the air, raining down everywhere in our beloved town.

Neurotoxin + Enzyme Inhibitor = Impaired Immunity

Enzymes are the body’s first line of defense against bacteria, viruses, toxins, inflammation and all other imbalances.  Enzymes transport nutrients and are the vital spark in our bodies, gardens, animal companions, bats, birds, bees, dragonflies and plants. Enzymes allow life to happen.

Enzymes are one of the most essential elements in your body for the health and wellness of every bodily function. Every breath you take and every action you have both mentally and physically, requires enzymes.  All other living beings, from bats to soil microbes, rely on enzyme activity to create a growing, healthy ecosystem.

The Importance of Enzymes to Your Health

Generally speaking, you will be healthy if the enzymes in your body are functioning properly. Once enzymes fail to perform their important functions, all organs begin to weaken. This can cause shoulder pain, general weakness of the extremities, dizziness, poor appetite, etc. You might not even be aware that you are sick. We call this a state of “semi-health” – not really healthy, yet not quite bad enough to call you truly sick. If this situation continues, the human body will be unable to fight off bacterial invasion, then various sorts of diseases will naturally follow, including cancer.

Enzymes: How They Work in the Body

a) Enzymes generate chemical reactions between two substances to create a new substance.

b) Enzymes regulate chemical processes in living cells – All living cells contain enzymes.

Simply put, enzymes regulate the complex processes of life itself.


Metabolic enzymes play a role in all bodily processes including breathing, talking, moving, thinking, behavior and maintenance of the immune system. A subset of these metabolic enzymes acts to neutralize poisons and carcinogens such as pollutants, DDT and tobacco smoke, changing them into less toxic forms that the body can eliminate.

With each application of Aqua-Kontrol 30-30, all of us are being exposed – our children, yards, pets, schools, gardens and homes.  Everyone in town, from the youngest to the oldest, are being exposed to these toxins in the days following a fogging.  Continuing down the path of indiscriminate pesticide use will only create more toxic accumulation, more damage to our ecosystem and our immune systems.  Children are especially at risk.

At low doses, this pesticide can be insidiously dangerous as our bodies adapt and store the toxic ingredients, which are so foreign to our biology and internal workings.

Every one of the 15 studies that we found on the immune system showed significant effects. Results indicated that permethrin led to the death and/or reduced production of blood cells necessary to fight bacteria and viruses and remove waste products from the blood. Varied physiological changes, including DNA damage, were reported in other systems.

Permethrin + Piperonyl Butoxide + “inert ingredients” do not simply go away after the spraying.  These toxins remain active on flowering plants, food crops, garden soil, playgrounds, lakes, yards and other surfaces for more than 40 days.  Children playing on lawns, dogs and cats who eat grass or chew on sticks, and people who work in their gardens will come into contact with this endocrine disrupting, carcinogenic, enzyme blocking toxin.  If applications are repeated week after week, year after year, damage to the environment and our health will become greater and more apparent.

The Good News

THERE IS ANOTHER WAY!  The cities of Denver and Boulder (and many others) have implemented an integrated pest management system that emphasizes a long range, eco-friendly plan that includes the use of a naturally-occurring larvacidal bacteria that prevents mosquito larvae from becoming adults.  Surveillance, source reduction, larvaciding, biological controls (dragonflies, birds, and bats) and Gambusia or mosquito fish are all part of the integrated pest management system.

IPM was initiated to overcome the shortfalls associated with indiscriminate application of pesticides. Pesticide application alone is not effective in controlling mosquito populations because it is difficult to get the pesticide into the habitat of the mosquitoes due to weather conditions (ex. rain, wind) or changes in adult mosquito activity. In addition, most pesticides used for adult mosquitoes do not provide long term residual control. Mosquito larvae are left to continue their development, and will quickly replace adults. In fact, mosquitoes can build resistance if pesticides are overused. Aside from their ineffectiveness, pesticides can have long term ecological, environmental, and human/animal health impacts. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) encourages non-chemical mosquito control measures; therefore, in an IPM approach to mosquito control, pesticides play only a small part in overall mosquito control.


An Integrated Pest Management system is much more effective and protective than indiscriminate spraying.  Let’s design an Integrated Pest Management policy to replace the existing Resolution 16-15 – for the health and well being of Berthoud and all of its inhabitants.

Troubling Language of Resolution 15-16: Must Read!

In August I spoke at the Town Board meeting. What I discussed was the troubling language used in Berthoud’s Mosquito Control Policy that was passed along with Resolution 15-16 last year.

I apologize for the length of this. I will highlight a few of the most troubling parts here. I have included links to download copies of my entire notes from which I spoke and the recommendation to spray from Adrienne LeBailly.

From Section 3, first half of the first paragraph of Resolution 15-16, Mosquito Control Policy:

Upon notice of a Vector index of .5 or higher or on recommendation from Colorado Mosquito Control, Larimer County Public Health or the CDC, adult control will be implemented town-wide and spray exclusion area will not be recognized. Such control measures shall occur at the direction of the Town staff without further Board action.

1) There was no emergency. The policy states that upon “recommendation” adult control “will be” implemented. In a call with Derek Turner of the Larimer County Health Department, he stated “it was a recommendation, not a have to”. The way the Policy is written it turns the “recommendation” into a “have to”.

In the recommendation from Adrienne LeBailly, the Director of Larimer County Department of Health and Environment, she said it would be “prudent” for the town to spray.

To make matters worse, the town staff and Colorado Mosquito Control used incendiary language to ramp up this “recommendation” into an emergency.

Chris Buckridge used the phrase “real and Imminent threat” in an email reply. In a response from Ms. Boze, of CMC, she called it an “emergency public health application.”  And in the email notification from Mike Hart, the Town Administrator, to the trustees, he stated the following, “now determined to be a ‘public health risk’ by the Director of the Larimer County Department of Health.”

Why then is town staff and it’s contractor using incendiary language and refusing to honor shut-off requests when the email from Director LeBailly, was only a suggestion? What is the town’s motivation for ramping up language into an “emergency” situation when it was not? Why is the town staff so motivated to create an “emergency” out of a suggestion and blanket the town with insecticides?

If Director LeBailly is NOT using the language of “emergency”, then that should be reflected in town’s actions.

2) The decision to spray is up to outside organizations and the Town Board has no say in it what so ever. The policy is written in such a way that Colorado Mosquito Control, Larimer County Public Health or the CDC can “recommend” that the town spray and then we “have to” spray. Later in the policy is states that the spraying will be carried out by the town staff without further board action.

The first thing is that Colorado Mosquito Control should NOT be recommending that the town spray. That is a conflict of interest. They should be noted as a service provider only and so noted in the policy.

Secondly, the board SHOULD have the right to review the “recommendation” and decide to move forward or not. There may be many other factors to consider in making such an important decision and the Board should be involved in it.

3) Spraying “will be” implemented upon notice of a Vector index of .5 or higher or on recommendation from one of the above mentioned entities.

The location of the Vector Index is not specified. This means it could be in Northern Fort Collins, Weld County or some other location. A radius should be specified around Berthoud.

And the more troubling part of the highlighted text is the word “or on recommendation” which means even if there is not a high Vector Index, one of the above mentioned entities could make a “recommendation” and the town would have to spray.

4) “spray exclusion area will not be recognized.” If it’s not deemed an emergency by Adrienne LeBailly, then spray exclusions SHOULD be honored by anyone who requests them.

If you find this policy troubling, please write a polite email to the board members telling them what you object to and that you want them to revise or rescind Resolution 15-16.

Link to my complete comments:

Link to notice from Adrienne LeBailly including town correspondence:

How Effective is Spraying Pesticide?

Information that is given to the public on the efficacy of pesticide application to fend off viruses such as West Nile Virus is limited.  We are told about studies and given numbers but what is the transparency of the study?  Who completed this study?  Is testing done in a limited scope?  Are the tests done in real world conditions?  How often has this test been done and where?  And most importantly, what are the long term effects on the health of humanity, animals, pollinating insects and our planet?  It is imperative that we question the solution to a problem.  If it causes more harm than good, then we must keep searching for a comprehensive and intelligent solution that will serve the higher good of all.  Read on…

Excerpts from:


Why Pesticide Spraying for West Nile Virus in California May Cause More Harm Than Good


“There’s not enough evidence that all this spraying has changed the dynamic of the outbreak, and that’s in part because the studies really haven’t been done to find out.”

-Michael Hansen, the chief pesticide researcher at Consumers Union, which publishes Consumer Reports magazine, Newsday, November 7, 200032


Effectiveness of Spraying in Controlling Mosquito Populations is Limited

One study conducted by the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station in 2002 found that mosquito populations did not drop notably after trucks sprayed pesticides in the cities of Greenwich and Stamford.33   However, very few studies have been conducted to document the effectiveness—or lack of effectiveness of pesticide spraying in curbing mosquito populations under real word conditions.

Most studies on the impact of pesticide spraying are performed under out-door “lab” type conditions. In such studies, caged mosquitoes are placed at measured distances from spraying, at differing pesticide potencies. Some cage trap experiments in residential areas have shown a reduction in mosquito populations of about 30 percent after a spraying.34

Such studies, however, may overestimate the effectiveness of spraying since they do not take into account the many variables that are involved in ground spraying. Real world mosquitoes are not trapped in one place. Rather, they can hide under leaves and in vegetation. As a result, extrapolating the efficacy numbers from cage or trap studies to actual spraying programs is questionable.

“In order to work, the insecticide must hit the mosquito directly,” Cornell University researcher Dr. David Pimentel reported in a November 2000 interview with Newsday. “But since spray trucks are only fogging the street side of buildings, I doubt that more than one-tenth of 1 percent of the poison is actually hitting its target. And you have to put out a lot of material to get that one-tenth of a percent onto the mosquito.”35

In a 1998 study, it took two to three times more insecticide to kill 90% of the mosquitoes in residential settings than it took to kill 90% of the mosquitoes in open areas. Spraying high enough levels of insecticide to kill most of the mosquitoes in residential areas would require violating current labeling safety guidelines.39


33. Christine Woodside, “No Big Fall in Mosquitoes After Communities Spray,” New York Times, 6 October 2002, 14CN.

34. Dan Fagin, “Doubts about Spraying — Some Experts Call it Ineffective Against West Nile Virus,” Newsday, 8 November 2000.

35. Dan Fagin, “Doubts about Spraying — Some Experts Call it Ineffective Against West Nile Virus,” Newsday, 8 November 2000.

39. Gary Mount, “A Critical Review of Ultralow-Volume Aerosols of Insecticide,” Journal of the American Mosquito Control Association, 14(3):305-334, 1998.

Resolution 15-16: Berthoud’s Mosquito Control Policy

This is the excerpt for your very first post.

In June of 2015, the Berthoud Town Board passed Resolution 15-16, their resolution to institute a policy to spray for mosquitos within the town limits.

Besides the fact that we object to the idea of blanketing the town with pesticides the resolution is poorly written.

You can have a read through it at the following link: