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2014 News

Pennsylvania DEP Officials to Conduct Black Fly Helicopter Spraying June 3 in Delaware River Basin

June 2, 2014

On Tuesday, June 3, 2014, the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) will conduct an aerial black fly suppression operation along the Delaware and Schuylkill rivers.

Work will be conducted on the Delaware River in Northampton and Bucks Counties in Pennsylvania and Warren, Hunterdon, and Mercer Counties in New Jersey from the Slateford Railroad Bridge downriver to near the Trenton (N.J.) city border.

The spraying will begin at the Thorpe Farm in Upper Makefield Township at 8 a.m. and continue north along the Delaware River and then south along the Schuylkill River throughout the day.

Typical operations involve the application of Vectobac 12AS (a brown, viscous, liquid material that smells like fish oil) from a helicopter.  The helicopter will apply the Vectobac perpendicular to the river flow in designated areas by flying back and forth across the river and discharging the material from a boom arm. The material is then carried downriver. The active ingredient in Vectobac is Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis (B.t.i.), a naturally occurring soil bacterium.

AgAir, LLC of Thomasville, PA is the scheduled contractor and will be using a Bell Jet Ranger with tail number N16979. For additional information about black fly suppression, please visit the website http://www.depweb.state.pa.us/blackfly.