Not a military maneuver, but rather a large-scale cooperative effort between the city and the beach community to reduce the fly population during the busy summertime months when tourists — and trash — multiply and intensify the pest problem.
“There’s an increase in trash generated in the summer in Mission Beach with tourists and the large number of vacation-home rentals,” said Jose Ysea, spokesman for the city’s environmental services. “This is a nuisance, particularly to the restaurants and the businesses.”
Ysea said the city was asked by the beach community to do additional trash pickups, an impossible option given the city’s budget constraints.
“So we looked at other ways of attacking the fly issue and started an outreach campaign, working with the Mission Beach Town Council and some business owners to come up with ideas on how to reduce flies in the area,” said Ysea.
What the city and community came up with was a multi-point program for reducing the fly population by disrupting the insect’s life cycle.
The fly eradication educational program encourages beach residents to:
• securely bag all trash;
• use trashcan liners and tie them off after four days;
• spray diluted bleach on trash container bodies and lids as an insecticide;
• keep trashcan lids closed;
• replace cracked or damaged trash cans with new ones;
• keep trash containers in dark spaces, which flies do not prefer; and
• keep debris and vegetation cleared away from trash receptacles.
Ysea said the city is offering trashcans and bags at a discount and spreading the word about the anti-fly effort through public outreach.
“We’re taking names and informing people who need replacement trash and recycling bins that they can get new trash bins for $70 and free recyling bins for a delivery charge of $25, which is waived for Mission Beach residents who sign up,” he said.
Ysea said the city will have a booth at the May 17 “Legends of the Surf” Mission Beach centennial celebration at San Fernando Court, where local residents can sign up for discounted trashcans and liners.
As part of the Mission Beach community’s efforts to eradicate flies, nonprofit BeautifulMB has also developed a low-cost, voluntary second trash pickup and can-cleaning program for residents, property- and vacation-rental agencies and businesses.
The summer program will consist of 14 additional trashcan pickups in Mission Beach between June 6 and Sept. 6, with at least one trashcan cleaning that will include deodorizing and bacteria protection.
Free trashcan liners are also being sponsored by Bill Luther Realty and San Diego Vacation Rentals.
Scavenging of trash bins is also illegal. Those witnessing scavenging are encouraged to report it by calling city code enforcement at (858) 694-7000 on weekdays and the San Diego Police Department at (619) 531-2000 after hours and on weekends.
For more information, visit www.beautifulmb.com.