“The most dangerous animal in the world”: Munich takes action against tiger mosquitoes – FC Bayern – News

by jonas rap

23 July 2022
7:58 pm


The Asian tiger mosquito can transmit many diseasesPhoto: US CfDCaP // US Center for Disease Control and Prevention / dpa

More than 700,000 people worldwide die from mosquito bites each year, as some of the approximately 3,500 species transmit the deadly pathogen. The Asian tiger mosquito is especially dangerous. I arrived in Bavaria a long time ago. Now the city of Munich is responding.

In this country, mosquitoes are primarily annoying, and in other regions of the world they are dangerous. By transmitting diseases, you kill more people in one year than sharks do in a century. Bill Gates once described the mosquito as “the most dangerous animal in the world” on his Gates Notes blog.

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The Asian tiger mosquito is the main carrier of dangerous dengue fever. In addition, the insect, which has been transported around the world by cargo and travel activities in recent decades, fuels the spread of Zika, Chikungunya and West Nile viruses. “Unlike the native mosquitoes, the tiger mosquito is very aggressive. The stitches are more dense,” explains Jens Gerhardt of the Health Protection Department of the Munich Ministry of Health.

“Most successful mosquito species”

According to the Bavarian State Office of Health and Food Safety (LGL), the Asian tiger mosquito is “the most successfully spread mosquito.” Originally from the tropics and subtropics of South and Southeast Asia, it has spread to Europe since the 1990s. This has also been repeatedly proven in Germany.

As early as 2012, after evaluating mosquito traps in Baden-Württemberg and Bavaria, biologist Norbert Becker demonstrated “frequent and regular introductions through transit routes from southern Europe to Germany”. BR talks about twelve sites where mosquitoes have been identified in Bavaria since 2015.

The LGL estimates the risk posed by so-called “container breeders” to the population of Bavaria as “currently very low”. However, heat-loving mosquitoes are already adapting to the changing climatic situation in Europe: they lay eggs in the fall in the winter, and then the larvae hatch in the spring. “Eggs can live up to ten degrees below zero,” says Gerhardt.

Bavaria Committees Mosquito Feasibility Study

Climate change means that “invasive foreign mosquito species could be circulating in Bavaria,” Bavaria’s Health Minister Klaus Holleczyk (CSU) said when he set up the first mosquito trap for a feasibility study on Friday. A free country wants to control the spread of foreign mosquitoes as comprehensively as possible. “We must act now to keep the consequences of climate change on the public as low as possible,” Holczyk emphasized.

The state capital also arms itself against foreign mosquitoes—particularly against the Asian tiger mosquito. In order to quickly identify a possible spread, the Munich Health Administration (GSR) has developed a tiger mosquito monitoring system. As the GSR announced on Twitter, whether black and whiteflies are settling in Munich should be monitored “so that they can take countermeasures if necessary.”

With these measures, Munich fights the tiger mosquito

The state capital is also intervening preemptively: odor traps have been set up in cemeteries and those affected have been informed, GSR reports. Standing water in saucers is the perfect breeding ground. Jens Gerhardt of GSR-Gesundheitsschutz explains: “The tiger mosquito lays its eggs in the coasters – wherever they are a little wet. These eggs then settle to the edges of the water’s surface.”

Therefore it is important to pour water bowls, clean them and wipe the rim. From now on, watering cans should also be hung upside down. Signs at city cemeteries titled “Fight against the Asian tiger mosquito” indicate the measures. “We have a lot of interest in the mosquitoes that don’t settle here,” says Gerhardt.


You can find more articles from this section under the state of Bavaria.

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