Two Tropical Disease-Carrying Mosquitoes Discover In Florida
South Florida's dengue transmitting mosquito is getting a little more crowded. Lately, the said tropical disease-carrying mosquitoes have been discovered in the U.S mainland for the first time. The deadly mosquitoes were caught in traps near Florida's Everglades.
According to NBC Miami, scientists are alarmed after knowing that this kind of mosquito has been found nearby the mainland. They say that this could raise the risk of mosquito-borne viruses that can infect people. However, health officials say that it is still too early to sound alarmed.
The University of Florida researchers has discovered two new tropical mosquitoes in Homestead and Florida City which are capable of carrying viruses to humans. These mosquitoes are native to Central, South America, and the Greater Antilles.
Most of them are probably residing on plants, canals, ditches, and ponds in South Florida and are rapidly increasing in numbers.
"Nobody had this on their radar. This would speak to some broader environmental changes that have caused Florida to be more accessible and hospitable to tropical mosquitoes," said UF entomologist Nathan Burkett-Cadena.
Nathan Burkett-Cadena accidentally trapped the mosquitoes while looking for native marsh mosquitoes in their research trip with his assistant Erik Blosser in October. According to Miami Herald, the discovery of the said mosquito was during the bad time for mosquito-weary South Florida.
Zika outbreak has become the first disease to spread in the continental United States. The Zika outbreak posed alarm to the residents of Miami and refrain tourists from visiting t the country. Recently, there were 243 locally transmitted cases which were reported in Miami-Dade County alone and another 1,048 local and travel cases found statewide. Out of the total number of infected patients, 209 pregnant whose babies being born with brain damage and deformed heads.
According to Janet McAllister who is a medical entomologist with the U.S Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, other species of mosquitoes that are capable of transmitting Venezuelan equine encephalitis are already y in the country.