Insects, Reverend Sue, and You!

Several of our congregants have communicated a concern relative to Sue’s upcoming installation, namely that ticks, and perhaps mosquitoes will make a more lasting  impression than the service.  To deal with this potential threat here is what we are planning to do, and not do:
1.  We will NOT be spraying the grounds with insecticide.  As one of our resident Saster Gardeners notes:  “Would we have to append our monarch butterfly garden sign with one that says ‘just kidding’?” We have made environmental promises and should keep them.
2.  In lieu of the “kill everything and let God (or deity/consciousness/“none of the above” of your choice) sort it out, we will have some sprays of DEET and Permethrin available for folks to use on their socks and pant legs.  Perhaps those planning to come “ultra chic” and wear some fabulous footwear may wish to bring some tasteful sweat bands they can discreetly spray and slip on before heading outside.   DEET to keep away mosquitoes, Permethrin to kill ticks.   More on Permethrin below.
3.  Encourage anyone that has their favorite botanical repellent to use it, and if willing, bring it along to share with others.
Perhaps this effort will become another means for us all to come together, share, and further bond as a community!
About Permethrin- permethrin is a synthetic insecticide, derived from compound that is naturally produced by chrysanthemums.  It is on the World Health Organization’s List of Essential Medicines, the most effective and safe medicines needed in a health system.  It is used over the counter and by prescription to treat scabies and head lice.  It is considered safe to use on pregnant women and children as young as two months old.  It is deadly to ticks, who pretty much ignore DEET.  It is also hazardous to aquatic creatures and cats.  The hazard to cats is primarily due to how frequently they groom themselves, and thus ingest it, so if you have cats, plan to thoroughly wash your clothing after. Permethrin is the active ingredient in most tick shampoos for dogs.  The permethrin spray that will be on hand will be diluted to 0.5%, which is considered below the threshold for skin irritation.  If you want to learn more (and what good UUer isn’t endlessly curious about everything?)- here are some links you may find helpful:
We look forward to everyone enjoying this wonderful event.  Well everyone except the mosquitoes and ticks!  See you soon!
Doug Jurrius
UUFE Buildings and Grounds

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