Hattiesburg, Miss. -Jeremy Hirsch, an entrepreneur from Hattiesburg, Mississippi, and president of Spartan Mosquito, is on a mission to help the residents of both Texas and Florida address a health risk that promises to get worse in the aftermath of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma — mosquitoes.
Mosquito eggs hatch when water reaches them. Estimates of the number of mosquito eggs in a floodwater habitat range between 0.7 and 1.3 million eggs per acre. If only a small percentage of these eggs hatch and survive to the adult stage, the number of adult mosquitoes flying around looking for blood at one time is almost incomprehensible. Regardless of how much effort citizens put into dumping water and cleaning up containers around homes and businesses, this type of local and small-scale effort will not have much impact in reducing mosquitoes in a floodwater site, especially after an event of the scale of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma.
Experts agree the potential for a mosquito outbreak after these hurricanes is extremely high (the local population of Aedes aegypti has exploded, right on schedule, in South Miami), and given our heightened awareness of the disease-carrying capability of mosquitoes, efforts to quell this outbreak should be front and center in recovery efforts for all areas impacted by flooding and hurricanes.
In light of this knowledge, Spartan Mosquito, manufacturer of the Spartan Mosquito Eradicator, has donated a trailer load of their product to South Miami — enough to cover ⅓ of the city (0.8 square miles of the city’s 2.3 square miles) from a potentially massive mosquito outbreak. Spartan has also sent enough product to Houston to keep one square mile of the city mosquito free until Christmas.
The mayor of South Miami, Philip Stoddard ( a biology professor since 1992 who has been featured in numerous documentaries including Discovery Channel’s ‘Mosquito’ ), is distributing Spartan Mosquito Eradicators from City Hall on a first come, first serve basis. Contact Mayor Stoddard at City Hall, 305-663-6338, for additional details. Mayor Stoddard began passing out Mosquito Eradicators on Sunday, handing them out to over 100 families from his home. Hirsch was presented with a mini-key to South Miami by Mayor Stoddard for his help in Irma relief efforts.
A small network of Spartan contacts in Houston continues to work to help as many people in the city as they can.
“We were founded to keep families safe,” says Hirsch, “so anytime we can do that for others makes us excited.” Hirsch concludes, “We wish we could donate to everyone in the world, but we’re happy to be reducing mosquito numbers in recovery areas for our small part.”