In an innovation that could potentially resolve the festering issue of hyacinth infestation and mosquito breeding in city water bodies by delivering Pyrethrum mixture, the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) has decided to leverage drone technology.
In what could be first such initiative in the country, drones are used to deliver natural Pyrethrum mixture to kill mosquitoes and a bio-enzyme to tackle hyacinth.
On a pilot basis, the drone initiative was taken up at the Miyapur lake, which is spread over 16 acres and is infested with hyacinth and unchecked mosquito breeding. The municipal officials collaborated with a drone company MAROT and used drones to deliver Pyrethrum and the bio-enzyme all over the lake surface.
“Usually, the entomology personnel have to venture deep into the water bodies, sometimes even to the middle of the lake to spray Pyrethrum, which is hazardous. That’s why we thought of using a drone to directly spray the biochemical over the entire expanse. The results have been quite encouraging,” said GHMC Zonal Commissioner (West), D. Hari Chandana.
The bio-enzyme, over a period of time, can cause the water hyacinth to die and dry up automatically. “When manually removed, seeds are usually left behind in the lake and they start to grow again and spread across the lake in no time. The bio-enzyme promises to kill the water hyacinth along with seeds,” she said.
The Environment Protection Training and Research Institute (EPTRI) has been approached to collect water samples of Miyapur lake to study the impact of using bio-enzyme. “A drastic reduction in mosquito breeding is already noticed. The EPTRI will study the impact of bio-enzyme on the lake ecosystem,” Hari Chandana said. Based on the study findings, the concept is to be taken to other city lakes.
A custom made ten litres drone fitted with bio-chemical sprays was flown over the water body. “The drone released up to 112 litres of the biochemical spray in just one day. It is impossible to reach the entire expanse of the lake manually,” said founder, MAROT Drones, Prem Kumar Vislawath.
According to officials the drone carried out spraying across the lake from the edges to the lake middle.