July 14, 2014
Invasive Species- Asian Tiger Mosquito
One of the biggest summertime pests of all time is the MOSQUITO. I am not just talking about any mosquito; I am talking about the Asian tiger mosquito. The Asian tiger mosquito real name is ,”Aedes Albopictus.” (www.idph.state.il.us) The Asian tiger mosquito,” is a small black and white mosquito, about ¼-inch long. The name “Tiger mosquito” comes from its white and black color pattern.”(www.idph.state.il.us) The female Asian tiger mosquito is as vicious a real tiger feeding on its prey. An important characteristic on the Asian tiger mosquito is the,”the white stripe running down the center of its head and back with white bands on the legs.” (www.idph.state.il.us) There are many kinds of pests everywhere but when I think of summertime pest, the first thing that pops in my head is mosquito.
The Asian tiger mosquito is not native to the United States. The Asian tiger mosquito is native to, “Southeast Asia.” (www.galvbayinvasives.org) “The Asian tiger mosquito was first detected in the U.S. in 1985 in Houston, Texas. It is believed that the species arrived in the U.S. via shipments of tires from Japan.” (www.galvbayinvasives.org) The Asian tiger mosquito was never supposed to arrive in the United States and arrived via imports from a foreign country which proves we need stronger trade regulations. Also, “.... the tire casings has spread the species to more than 20 states since 1985. The tiger mosquito is an important disease carrier in Asia.” (www.galvbayinvasives.org) The Asian tiger mosquito did not only spread diseases in Asia but also in the U.S. The mosquitoes were,” ….found to be infected with LaCrosse encephalitis viruses and West Nile Virus, which can cause encephalitis (inflammation of the brain).” (www.galvbayinvasives.org) These viruses are not something to play with they are serious and can be deadly. The Asian tiger mosquito is a problem all over parts of Asia and the eastern United States. It causes problems wherever it is found even if it does not contain a virus and leaves an annoying, itchy bump.
When you think of mosquitoes you usually think of them being a predator but they also have predators such as,” …….: birds, bats, frogs, toads, fish, salamanders, and other insects.” (www.galvbayinvasives.org) Mosquitoes are known as vampire insects because of the way female mosquitoes suck your blood. “The mosquito bites humans, livestock, amphibians, reptiles, and birds. Biting rates of this species have been recorded at the level of 30 to 48 bites per hour.” (www.galvbayinvasives.org) “Females require blood to produce eggs……… the adult is the free-flying insect that feeds on vertebrate animals (females only) and the nectar of the plants.” (www.galvbayinvasives.org) It is hard to try to contain the Asian tiger mosquito population. “Since early detection is key to preventing the spread and establishment of this species regional/local monitoring or surveillance is essential. Extra care should be taken to empty outdoor containers of standing water. Homeowners should regularly exchange water in outdoor containers such as bird