New mosquito virus is not that desperate

A NEW mosquito species has arrived in Spain for the first time, and it could be carrying a deadly virus, according to the Health Alerts and Emergencies Co-ordination Centre.

But experts believe it is relatively safe. It started with a simple photograph of one of these creatures being sent to the Mosquito Alert site, from a concerned person in Asturias.

He suspected that it was not one of the normal types of the pests found in the area, and he was asked to supply adult and larval specimens. It was confirmed that the sample was of the Aedes japonicus mosquito, normally found in Asia.

To verify their decision, a field inspection was carried out at the site of the discovery, led by the entomologists of Mosquito Alert, along with University of Zaragoza entomological team members.

They concluded that, rather than them being a few “rogue visitors”, the mosquito type was now established in the area and could well spread further in time.

Apart from giving an irritating bite, like most other mosquitos, it was felt that this breed had the capability to transmit several viruses, including the West Nile, Dengue and Chikungunya.

But Roger Eritja, leader of the investigation, believes that the risk is low, and adds: “We must consider that the risk of transmission of these diseases depends on the number of mosquitos present, and whether the virus is circulating among the population.

“At this time, we do not think the numbers are high, and, anyway, the conditions in Asturias are unlikely to encourage their growth.”

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Posted by on Aug 10 2018. Filed under Local News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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