Town Examines Alternative For Controlling Mosquitoes

February 14, 2002
The Associated Press

Washington, Missouri, USA - When local woodworker Matt Soete heard offcials in this town were considering pesticides to control mosquitoes along a new trail, he went to the park board and suggested a more natural form of control: Bats.
"You won't hear them, most people won't see them and they don't require any pay," he said.
Park board members liked the idea.

"Why not try it? What do we have to lose?" member Judy Lamb asked.

Soete volunteered to build the bat houses-he estimated six houses mounted atop metal poles would do the trick. He has already contacted others about donating materials and labor. As many as 200 bats can't into one house.
A bat can eat up to 5,000 mosquitoes, moths and other bugs in a single night, Soete said.

If not bats, the city has allocated $29,500 to pay for mosquito control this year, probably through the use of pesticides.
"I want to do as many things as I can to convince the city to use as little pesticide as possible," Soete said. "I am concerned about the long-term use of pesticides."