A powerful weapon has emerged in Florida’s battle against mosquitoes — the Airbus H125 helicopter.
The H125 is the helicopter of choice for mosquito control, with 13 H125s now supporting this unique utility mission across the state.
Florida’s vast number of salt marshes and wetlands make it one of the world’s most prolific breeding grounds for mosquitoes. With tropical and subtropical climates, the state is home to over 80 different species of mosquitoes.
Aerial treatments are among the most effective ways to control mosquitoes, which make the state habitable and to fight mosquito-borne diseases such as West Nile and Zika viruses.
“The H125 is an invaluable resource for places like Florida, that work year-round to protect its population from mosquitoes,” said Will Fulton, Head of Marketing for Airbus Helicopters Inc. “Mosquitoes are more than a nuisance. They’re a health and safety concern, and the H125 is helping to keep these communities safe, thanks to the daily efforts put in by the local mosquito control districts.”
Operators tout the H125 for its increased payload capacity and speed, which means they can expand coverage during a single mission while also targeting specific areas. Advanced safety features, reliability and simplified maintenance also make it the helicopter of choice.
The aircraft can come equipped with improved Isolair and AgNav equipment for conducting mosquito control missions. Isolair is a three-part system with two liquid sprayers and one granular “hopper.” AgNav is a GPS-navigation system that automates spraying so pilots can focus on flying the aircraft.
H125 operators in Florida
Currently, the following Mosquito Control Districts in Florida operate the H125: Brevard County (2); Lee County (6); Florida Keys (2); Pasco County (2) and Charlotte County (1), in cooperation with Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office.
Brevard County Mosquito Control
Brevard County was the first operator to use the H125 in the fight against a rampant mosquito population. The county operates two H125 helicopters. Bordering the Atlantic Ocean, Brevard County is home to a large number of salt marshes. One-square inch of salt marsh soil can hold more than 20,000 mosquito eggs, making aerial spraying critical. The county’s mosquito control district also uses the H125s to support fire rescue during wildfires.
Lee County Mosquito Control
In Lee County, which is on the Gulf Coast, the H125’s improved fuel efficiency and reduced maintenance needs allowed the mosquito control district to cut the number of helicopters it operated from thirteen to six as they replaced their fleet of older aircraft.
Isolair’s improved systems have allowed the H125 to carry more chemical product than any other helicopter in its class.
Florida Keys Mosquito Control
Florida Keys Mosquito Control began operating two H125s in 2020 as part of a fleet upgrade plan. The district uses aerial spraying and broadcasting to control mosquito populations, particularly after heavy rains. Aerial techniques are particularly effective across expansive areas.
Pasco County Mosquito Control
Pasco County on Florida’s western coast entrusted Airbus with a full nose-to-tail HCare support contract for its H125 fleet. The five-year agreement covers both H125 helicopters for unscheduled parts removals.
“We are always looking for the best, most efficient and most cost effective ways to fight mosquitoes, and the H125 is the solution,” said Adriane Rogers, director of Pasco County Mosquito Control.
Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office Mosquito Control
Located off Florida’s Gulf coast, Charlotte County operates one H125, which also serves the Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office. The helicopter is used not only to manage mosquito populations, but also for firefighting, law enforcement and overwater rescue missions.