When Pools Face Foreclosure
Note to Ed McMahon: If you lose the foreclosure fight, nature has dibs on your swimming pool. The abandoned pools of foreclosed homes are prime mosquito breeding spots, increasing public concern over the mosquito-borne West Nile virus. Enter the "Foreclosure Fish." Local mosquito control agencies in California, Arizona, and Florida are dumping the Gambusia affinis into vacant pools, where the fish (commonly known as "mosquito fish") gorge themselves on mosquito larvae. While many environmentalists applaud the effort to control mosquitoes without pesticides, the fish carry an environmental cost--if they find their way into local water systems, mosquito fish tend to bully native wildlife, including the tadpoles of endangered frogs.