Majority of residents at public meeting speak out against Bandon Marsh spraying plan

September 10, 2013

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT:
Scott Hoffman Black, Executive Director; (503) 449-3793, sblack@xerces.org
Celeste Mazzacano, Aquatic Conservation Director; (503) 490-0389, celeste@xerces.org

Majority of residents at public meeting speak out against Bandon Marsh spraying plan

Local residents packed a town hall meeting to express their opposition to spraying Bandon Marsh NWR for the control of nuisance mosquitos. The Xerces Society supports local residents in their opposition to this misguided and likely illegal spraying plan.

PORTLAND, Ore. — Bandon residents packed a town hall meeting last night to speak out against Coos County’s proposed insecticide spraying for the Bandon Marsh National Wildlife Refuge. Over two-thirds of the residents who were given the chance to speak during the meeting expressed their opposition to the plan. The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation stands with these members of the Bandon community in calling for a halt to the spraying plan.

“Coos County must reconsider the spraying and develop a comprehensive integrated pest management plan to deal with the mosquito issue,” said Bandon and Coos County resident, Chris Wiggins. “The majority of community members who attended the meeting hope that Coos County does not go ahead with this aerial spraying.”

The Coos County plan calls for spraying over 10,000 acres of marshland and forests around Bandon with Dibrom, a broad-spectrum, organophosphate nerve agent that is highly toxic to humans as well as fish, birds and other wildlife. In addition, 300 acres of Bandon Marsh National Wildlife Refuge will be treated with MetaLarv, which is highly toxic to a wide range of aquatic insects and crustaceans.

“I was impressed with the strength and depth of opposition to the spraying plan displayed by Bandon residents,” said Celeste Mazzacano, Aquatic Conservation Director for the Xerces Society, who attended the meeting. “We urge Coos County to take note of local opinion and change to a better targeted—and legal—control program that is less harmful to Bandon Marsh.”

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For more information:

Press release (9/9/13) summarizing the legal and ecological issues with the Bandon Marsh NWR spraying plan

Xerces Society letter to U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (9/3/13)

Press release (9/3/13) outlining concerns with the Bandon Marsh NWR spraying plan

Letters to the Editor of the Bandon Western World newspaper expressing concern about the spraying proposal

Ecologically Sound Mosquito Management in Wetlands report


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