The population is being asked to help find the tiger mosquitoes

The persistent spring heat favors the development of a new generation of mosquitoes. Species of tropical origin newly introduced by the global movement of people and goods may also carry the risk of transmitting many pathogens previously uncharacteristic in Hungary. They are constantly coming to Europe, which means an increasingly favorable environment for them due to global warming.

The process can no longer be stopped, these species are already here, the only defense may be to find and eradicate their sites. An application created by the European Center for Epidemiology for which the public is asked for help is also available in Hungarian. Mosquito Alert use to identify tiger mosquitoes, Korean mosquitoes and Japanese bush mosquitoes, writes 24.hu.

The initiative has been joined by research groups from several Hungarian universities, supported by the staff of the National Laboratory of Virology of the University of Pécs and the Ecological Research Center of the Eötvös Loránd University, the latter’s program called Mosquito Monitor.

The system works by taking a photo of an unknown mosquito species and submitting the image via the downloaded app, specifying the coordinates and type of location (park, stream, etc.). The application is anonymous, the user only appears with one code in front of the researchers.

It is also useful for us to report breeding sites to our team or send data on the frequency of bites through the app. For each submission, you will receive confirmation of which species the mosquito belongs to based on the expert opinion.

– write the researchers of ELTE Mosquito monitor on their side.

The sample will reach 70-80 researchers in 22 European countries, with at least four people performing the species identification, which will be sent to the submitter after evaluation.

The call is now topical because warming after a period of abundant rainfall favors the emergence of mosquito larvae.

According to the biologist who told the paper, the invasive species are more hardy and more active in heatworms than domestic mosquitoes.

In recent years, if we manage to catch mosquitoes in the heat, they all belong to alien species.

He pointed out Dr. Kornélia Kurucz, staff member of the National Laboratory of Virology of the University of Pécs. According to the expert, certain pathogens can only spread in a given mosquito species, so the development of a local epidemic can only occur with the combined presence of the two. It is a worrying turn of recent years that three species of invasive mosquitoes have already arrived in Hungary. If a person with a tropical disease is bitten by a mosquito that can spread the pathogen, it can already induce an epidemic. And dangerous mosquito species prefer to nest near humans, so it is advisable to destroy their found sites as soon as possible – warn researchers.

(Cover image: Aedes Albopictus. Photo: Wikipedia)

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