Prim. Dr. Dragana Despot, Director of the Institute for Biocides and Medical Ecology

New Measures to Combat Mosquitoes

Detailed monitoring, the application of new remedies, treatment of micropockets and the use of thermal devices yield good results in the fight against mosquitoes

Dragana Despot Institute for Biocides and Medical Ecology

The Institute for Biocides and Medical Ecology has been cooperating successfully with the City of Belgrade in combatting harmful microorganisms for many years, and thanks to it being adequately equipped, it is ready to make its capacities available to all other interested local governments.

Since 2015, when the Institute for Biocides and Medical Ecology took over the monitoring and combatting of mosquitoes on the territory of Belgrade, the system for combatting mosquitoes has improved significantly. How has it improved and what results have been achieved to date?

– The suppression of mosquitoes is primarily based on the results of monitoring larvae and adult forms of mosquitoes. Detailed and timely monitoring of mosquito larvae in habitats enables the subsequent successful implementation of larvacide. The development and application of new remedies that are more ecologically acceptable and have an extended effect contributes significantly to reducing mosquito larvae levels. Contributing to the successful suppression of larvae and significant reductions in numbers of adult forms in some locations is the treatment of drains and micropockets, i.e., septic tanks in the Belgrade municipalities that don’t yet have a completely constructed sewage network.

Increasing the number of locations for monitoring adult forms provides a more reliable services and knowhow of your institution to be made available to other local governments?

– Apart from many years of cooperation with Belgrade, the Institute has also been cooperating excellently with other local governments for many years. For the municipality of Pančevo, the Institute’s multidisciplinary teams monitor harmful organisms throughout the territory of the municipality, as well as supervising actions aimed at combatting harmful organisms. For the municipalities of Kikinda, Kovin and Požarevac, the Institute’s teams carried out monitoring of mosquito larvae and adult forms both before and after the conducting of suppression activity. The Institute also organises and conducts training of all enterprises on the territory of the Republic of Serbia that deal with DDD [disinfection, disinfestation and deratting] activities, but also for enterprises operating in this domain in Republika Srpska and Montenegro. Among many institutions, the Institute has excellent cooperation with representatives of the World Health Organisation in Serbia and the reference laboratory from Italy for the detection of West Nile Virus. The Institute for Biocides and Medical Ecology is also equipped, in terms of personnel and financing, to make its capacities in the field of its activities available to all interested local governments. picture of their number and allows localised mosquito control. The use of thermal devices for fogging in the city’s riverside, forested and green areas contributes to more efficient suppression of mosquitoes and the environmentally safer application of biocides.

The “fight” against ragweed has also begun. During which period is action taken and what measures are applied?

– The weed plant known as ragweed, apart from being an invasive species, also has significance in terms of public health, because its pollen is a strong allergen and is the primary cause of 75% of all hay fever in humans. In order to protect the health of Belgrade residents, the Institute for Biocides and Medical Ecology will again, during this growth season, take action to combat and destroy ragweed on unregulated public areas on the territory of Belgrade in two phases, with the following activities:

Phase 1, from April to September, will encompass field monitoring with teams and the help of drones and GPS mapping of the prevalence of ragweed in unregulated public areas;

Phase 2 includes the combatting of ragweed at mapped locations across the territory of Belgrade, which encompasses chemical measures carried out with the use of herbicides.

Your Institute has good cooperation with the City of Belgrade. Are there plans for the services and knowhow of your institution to be made available to other local governments?

– Apart from many years of cooperation with Belgrade, the Institute has also been cooperating excellently with other local governments for many years. For the municipality of Pančevo, the Institute’s multidisciplinary teams monitor harmful organisms throughout the territory of the municipality, as well as supervising actions aimed at combatting harmful organisms. For the municipalities of Kikinda, Kovin and Požarevac, the Institute’s teams carried out monitoring of mosquito larvae and adult forms both before and after the conducting of suppression activity.

The Institute also organises and conducts training of all enterprises on the territory of the Republic of Serbia that deal with DDD [disinfection, disinfestation and deratting] activities, but also for enterprises operating in this domain in Republika Srpska and Montenegro.

Among many institutions, the Institute has excellent cooperation with representatives of the World Health Organisation in Serbia and the reference laboratory from Italy for the detection of West Nile Virus.

The Institute for Biocides and Medical Ecology is also equipped, in terms of personnel and financing, to make its capacities in the field of its activities available to all interested local governments.