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Posts tagged "mosquitos"

Every one of them is viciously attacking me tonight.


Mosquitoes Killed Two Killer Whales

The mosquito plague of summer is fast approaching and with it comes the threat of diseases, such as St. Louis encephalitis and West Nile virus. Not just human picnickers and campers have to worry about mosquito-borne disease. Even the largest of captive creatures is in danger from the tiny pests.

Two orcas, or killer whales (Orcinus orca), kept in captivity have died from the two diseases mentioned above, reported the Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society (WDCS).

“I think it is safe to say that no one would have thought of the risks that mosquitoes might pose to orcas in captivity, but considering the amount of time they unnaturally spend at the surface in shallow pools at these facilities, it is yet another deadly and unfortunate consequence of the inadequate conditions inherent to captivity,” said Courtney Vail, campaigns manager for WDCS.

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Crazy days ahead.

(via reuters)

"Artemisinin-resistant malaria parasites first emerged in Cambodia in 2006. Now researchers say the deadly bugs are quickly spreading.

Malaria remains one of the world’s great unnecessary killers. More than 650,000 people succumb to the disease each year — that’s more than one per minute — mostly in the poor nations of sub-Saharan Africa, but as deadly as malaria is, it doesn’t have to kill. Prevention and better treatment can stop the progression of the disease, and death tends to be a matter of extreme poverty.

Indeed, in recent years great progress has been made in controlling malaria, with deaths down 30% over the past decade. That’s thanks largely to more effective treatment regimens that make use of artemisinin, a plant-derived antimalarial drug originally developed in China. Artemisinin is the closest thing we have to a miracle drug for malaria.

That’s what makes the results of two studies out this week in the Lancet and Science so disturbing. Health officials have known for a while that some malaria parasites in the Southeast Asian nation of Cambodia have begun to develop resistance to artemisinin, but they hoped the resistance wasn’t spreading. Now researchers in the region have shown that artemisinin is becoming dramatically less potent in malaria cases in western Thailand, and they know it’s due to growing drug resistance in the malaria parasites themselves. If resistance to artemisinin were to spread to sub-Saharan Africa, the result could be a “public health disaster,” in the words of lead Lancet author Standwell Nkhoma of the Texas Biomedical Research Institute.

Artemisinin-resistant malaria parasites first emerged in Cambodia in 2006, which led to an international effort to control malaria and contain resistant strains there. But scientists in the Lancet study looked at more than 3,000 patients who were treated at malaria clinics in northwestern Thailand between 2001 and 2010. The researchers — including staff from Texas Biomed, Mahidol University in Bangkok and the Centre for Tropical Medicine at Oxford — found that it took longer and longer for malaria parasites to be cleared during treatment, a sign of growing resistance.”

Read more: TIME

I HATE mosquitoes. They love me, however. With temps rising, these buggers will bring more diseases into the U.S. (e.g., buy pesticide stocks).


Are mosquitoes becoming more dangerous?
From dengue fever to West Nile virus, mosquitoes seem to be getting better at smuggling diseases into the U.S. lately. And thanks to global warming and international travel, some experts say it’s just a hint of what’s to come.


“An unexpected side-effect of the flooding in parts of Pakistan has been that millions of spiders climbed up into the trees to escape the rising flood waters.

Because of the scale of the flooding and the fact that the water has taken so long to recede, many trees have become cocooned in spiders webs. People in this part of Sindh have never seen this phenonemon before - but they also report that there are now less mosquitos than they would expect, given the amoungt of stagnant, standing water that is around.

It is thought that the mosquitos are getting caught in the spiders web thus reducing the risk of malaria, which would be one blessing for the people of Sindh, facing so many other hardships after the floods.”

- via tumbledore / oversets / hm3