In a partnership between the California Conservation Corps, the city of Watsonville, and the county of Santa Cruz, combined resources are being used to combat mosquito infestation.

The man hours come from the CCC, who has a team of twelve members slogging through parts of Pinto Lake, clearing thick vegetation that harbors mosquito larvae.

The city and county are providing boats and life jackets.

At the end of the 582 person-hours of work, the hope is to have the lake clear for recreational boaters, water fowl, and clear enough to control mosquito populations from the ground.

Recently, these efforts required air-dropping chemicals from helicopters.

From the Santa Cruz Sentinel:

As if the weather wasn’t wet enough, several blue-helmeted California Conservation Corps members waded into chilly waist-deep water to clear aquatic plants from Pinto Lake on Monday.

During the past few days, the 12-member crew has cleared tons of native pennywort and smartweed as well as invasive Ludwigia, or water primrose, that have choked the lake and provided prime mosquito habitat.

“It’s a slow slog,” said crew supervisor Marcus Garrett, “but we’ve been able to make great progress.” So much progress, in fact, that today the crew will be able to extend the project to another section in the northern reaches of the 123-acre lake east of Watsonville.

Read the full article here.