Mosquito control awarded to Stokes
By Howell Dennis
CROWLEY – Glenn Stokes has been in his Estherwood office for just under one week.
Louisiana’s foremost mosquito control authority has recently been contracted to handle the duties in Acadia Parish. Needless to say he has been quite busy.
“We really hit the ground running,” said Stokes. “Since we were awarded the contract last Tuesday we’ve been busy setting up the office, doing inventory, putting out the traps and reestablishing our surveillance across the parish.”
The traps Stokes is referring to are 15 light traps across Acadia Parish which are run with a photoelectric cell that controls a light depending on what time of day it is. Three times a week mosquitoes are collected from the traps to determine where the “hot spots” for mosquito population are in the parish.
“This way we can tell which areas we need to concentrate on when we’re spraying,” he said.
Not that any parts of the parish will be neglected by any means. Stokes business, Mosquito Control Contractors Inc. (MCCI), sprays seven days a week including holidays. When compared to the five days of spraying a week from the company that held the duties prior to MCCI’s arrival, it is obvious that parish authorities knew what they were doing when they contacted Stokes.
“Also, our trucks drive at 15 miles per hour and they only used to go 10 (mph), we can cover much more ground,” he added.
Under the new agreement, MCCI will be responsible for servicing the entire parish with the exception of the cities of Crowley and Rayne, which have their own in-house spraying. However, Stokes will collaborate regularly with city officials from both towns to see which days they will be spraying so as to coordinate his efforts.
“Mosquitoes don’t know where the city limits are,” he smiled.
One would be hard pressed to find a more knowledgeable person when it comes to mosquito control. Stokes has 45 years of experience in the field with degrees from Southwestern Louisiana Institute (now ULL), Nebraska, Harvard, and Florida. One part of his job that he takes pride in is the public service aspect.
“People are always right,” said Stokes. “We’re here to satisfy people by providing mosquito control service. We help the public by reducing annoyance and the rate of mosquito borne disease. People pay their taxes for our service and it’s my job to see that they’re satisfied.”
Upon touring the new facility, the time that Stokes devotes to his business is obvious. He has a lab which is used to conduct experiments on mosquito population and identifying different breeds, an area used to mix the insecticides he uses, and a garage which houses the six trucks used for spraying in Acadia Parish.
Spraying in Acadia Parish runs at dusk and dawn as they are the “peak times of mosquito activity”. The peak months of activity are May and September. These times may vary depending on mosquitoes life cycles and warm temperatures.
“Right now the mosquito population is relatively low,” said Stokes. “However the mosquitoes population can grow rapidly at any time of the year, especially in Louisiana with our subtropical climate.”
Anyone seeking information on mosquito control in Acadia Parish or MCCI is encouraged to visit www.mcci.info or call (337) 785-4486.