Any attempts to swat away all the mosquitoes would invariably trigger off serious subsequent ecological damage.

Mosquito matrix reloaded- Why cant we just kill all of them
news Wednesday, February 03, 2016 - 13:43

Just when you thought dengue was the last weapon in the mosquito armoury, the crafty bloodsucker unleashes the ‘zika’ with its lethal pandemic potent from its arsenal on the cowering human populace.

BBC has even reported a rare case of zika in Dallas, Texas reportedly through sexual contact.

Declared a global public health emergency by the World Health Organisation (WHO), the zika virus has been linked to innumerable newborns with underdeveloped brains.

It was last seen racing through the Americas with a detour to the US and Asia being the next stop in all probability.

So what do we hapless humans do now?

In a 2010 article in the journal Nature, entomologist Joe Conlon of the American Mosquito Control Association in Jacksonville, Florida is of the view that mosquitoes do not occupy an unassailable niche in the environment. “If we eradicate them tomorrow, the ecosystems where they are active will hiccup and then get on with life. Something better or worse would take over.” 

Going by this line of thought, mosquitoes are apparently dispensable and would not rock our world’s fragile ecosystem.

Public health entomologist Grayson Brown however considers mosquito larvae integral to the aquatic ecology with scores of other insects depending on these for food.

So any attempts to swat away all the mosquitoes from the face of this earth –Brown opines- would invariably trigger off serious subsequent ecological damage.

Unless of course we are faced with a chronic public health emergency.

So would the present scenario qualify as one?

Even if we were to opt for a complete eradication of these little blood sucking vampires, modern-day diseases too would adapt to the changing scenario.

Like most common ailments gradually becoming resistant to almost all antibiotics, diseases which now make use of mosquitoes as vectors -carrying agents- would simply choose a different path to spread.

Experts therefore suggest a more realistic approach where the native mosquito population is contained to levels which significantly reduce the risk of pathogen transmission to humans.

It’s simply a matter of playing see-saw with the disease-bearing ticks in such a manner that we humans always hover above them at all times, no matter how lopsided the view seems to our “mosquitoic” opponents!

Click here for Grayson Brown's study

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