Thursday, November 5, 2015

This is worth Reproducing-02


I am one who believe that we can raise a larva of a big mosquito to feed on larvae of other smaller mosquitoes including aedes species.

Worth a try!

Fighting Mosquitoes with Mosquitoes

To combat the bug problem in Los Angeles, insect-control experts are releasing thousands of male mosquitoes infected with a powerful bacterium
By Dina Fine Maron | November 3, 2015

Aedes Albopictus were only recently introduced into California and researchers hope it is still possible to control them with the help of a powerful bacterium.
How a Tiny Bacterium Called Wolbachia Could Defeat Dengue
Earlier this year Los Angeles residents met about a new plan to release thousands of mosquitoes in their backyards. The bugs—all males—would not bite humans like females do, and area officials hoped these particular insects would block further reproduction of their kind. To some local residents the approach seemed a bit counterintuitive at first. Yet they were told the method would help curb pesticide use while simultaneously beating back their mosquito population.
The bugs to be released were not genetically modified. But they were not exactly garden-variety mosquitoes, either. The male mosquitoes were raised in a laboratory where they were infected with Wolbachia, a natural bacterium that would effectively sterilize them. When the males are released into people’s backyards and mate with wild females, the resulting eggs—for reasons not yet fully understood—simply will not hatch, leading to fewer mosquitoes.
Insect-control experts are hoping that deploying the laboratory mosquitoes will eventually slash the number of wild mosquitoes in people’s neighborhoods. The tricky part is that although certain strains of Wolbachia are already common in many species of mosquitoes—including some that bite humans—this desired type of Wolbachia does not naturally reside in Aedes Albopictus, the species of mosquitoes that had cropped up in the L.A. area during the past four years. So scientists had to artificially infect them.
The problematic wild mosquitoes, also known as Asian tiger mosquitoes, were first introduced into the area as stowaways in shipments of bamboo from China and subsequently spread across the state. Unlike other California mosquitoes, they are potential carriers of dengue and chikungunya, two painful diseases that can be transmitted from human to human via mosquito bites. Eyeing that reality, greater Los Angeles County and San Gabriel Valley volunteered to be part of this new effort.
Stephen Dobson, the entomologist who founded this Wolbachia operation and a professor at the University of Kentucky in Lexington, believes that because the mosquitoes are still relatively new to the California area they can be controlled. He tapped Wolbachia for the mission after he first piloted mosquito releases last year in Lexington (with permission from local regulators and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). The catch is that mosquitoes only live for a few weeks in the wild so Dobson’s team must continually release about 10,000 male mosquitoes per acre of land, each week, over several months to make any real difference. With about $1 million in funding from the National Institutes of Health for this and other mosquito control projects, Dobson’s team is testing if this approach can work in the field. He organized another series of mosquito releases in Lexington this year and also this past June his team expanded the project’s reach with further releases in Fire Island, N.Y., and Los Angeles. Around Fire Island, “We didn’t see much resistance [from residents] to this plan,” says Tom Iwanejko, principal environmental analyst for vector control at the Suffolk County Department of Public Works. “The community has been receptive to normal methods of mosquito control including using larvicide and spraying of adults for years—we all agree reducing pesticide use would be beneficial.”

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