Mosquitoes are an example of a species of insect that proves that “size is not everything”. These rascals spread diseases and often bite at the most inopportune moments.
They are also becoming resistant to pesticides which is bad news for mankind. It has been found that a chemical released by the backswimmer which is a predator of mosquitoes makes the pesticide Bti even more lethal.
The mosquitoes’ immune systems also fail badly thanks to this scheme of things. Thus scientists have given the verdict that a mixture of predator cues and pesticide agents may spell the death knell of these nasty mosquitoes.
Among some of the diseases that mosquitoes pass on are the West Nile Virus and Dengue not to mention Malaria. The modern agenda has the eradication of the mosquitoes way up there at the top of its hit list.
The problem is that insecticides also harm the environment to a considerable degree. Also the mosquitoes become immune to them thereby cancelling any prophylactic functions they may have had once upon a time.
The future lies in biopesticides which mimic chemical pesticides. The Bti bacteria is the most common biopesticide. Bti is am acronym for “Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis”.
Yet there lies the rub that mosquitoes are even becoming immune to this natural lethal agent. The dosage thus has to be increased which is not feasible in the long run. Nobody wants to harm the environment. The fallout of Bti is just too much for it to be a proper solution to the mosquito problem.
Researchers thus began to get serious in their efforts at finding a way out of this riddle. Chemicals released by the backswimmer cause a stress reaction among mosquitoes.
This turns off the immune systems of the mosquitoes. Now scientists have made a chemical form of the backswimmer’s anti-mosquito releasing agent. When this is combined with Bti and delivered to mosquitoes, it is a deadly mixture that does the job with efficiency and surety.
The death rates among mosquitoes after the usage of this strategy are much more devastating then was the case previously. Also the larvae of the mosquitoes do not live that long after exposure to this amalgam of death and destruction.
Making the cocktail is a cinch and it is reliable and comes at a reasonable cost too. Once the resistance of mosquitoes is destroyed, they become easy prey for this cocktail. So this may be the way out of the mosquito mess we find ourselves in today.
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