Tiger mosquitoes in the lucky bamboo


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They were really lucky: In lucky bamboo deliveries, Asian tiger mosquitoes survived the long sea voyage from Asia to the Dutch greenhouses. The problem is that the small insects transmit around 20 tropical diseases - including the dreaded dengue fever.

Tiger mosquitoes in the lucky bamboo: fever

The shoots of the dragon tree are given away as "lucky bamboo" for Christmas and New Year's Eve

In 15 out of 17 Dutch nurseries, the lucky bamboo cultivate, were Asian tiger mosquitoes (Aedes albopictus) discovered. The insects are feared as transmitters of tropical dengue fever. Epidemiologists have already given the all clear: none of the examined mosquitoes carried the dengue virus. In addition, the scientists doubt that the mosquitoes will continue to spread because they can not survive under Central European climatic conditions outside the greenhouses.
The tiger mosquitoes with the cuttings deliveries from Asia found their way into the Dutch greenhouses. The Lucky Bamboo - actually a dragon tree species called Dracaena sanderi - is cultivated there in plantations. The cut shoots are brought to Europe by ship containers in water buckets, where they are kept in greenhouses for about one to two months until budding, before being sold in large quantities in good time before Christmas. The water used to keep the cuttings clean was probably contaminated with tiger mosquito larvae and has ensured the survival of insects during their long journey to Europe.

IN SOUTHERN EUROPE, HEAVY

Tiger mosquitoes

Like many mosquitoes, tiger mosquitoes live on blood. You can recognize them by the striking black and white band

In Spain and Italy, the five-millimeter-sized Asian tiger mosquitoes gained a foothold many years ago and have become a plague in places. It is believed that they were brought in from the Far East with a boatload of old car tires full of small puddles of water. A few years ago, the insects were spotted in France and southern Switzerland, but not yet in Germany and Austria. The small aggressive mosquitoes cause painful, itchy stings that are easily inflamed.
In her homeland in Southeast Asia, the tiger mosquito transmits about 20 diseases, including dengue fever. The widespread viral disease is with up to 100 million new infections per year among the most common diseases that are transmitted by mosquito bites. It takes a silent course in 90 percent of all cases, ie without acute symptoms. In the other cases, there are strong attacks of fever, headache and body aches and rashes. The approximately 14-day acute phase is followed by a recovery phase lasting several weeks. In about 3-5 percent of the patients, mostly children or adolescents, the dengue fever is fatal.
Fortunately, newcomers from Asia have so far not transmitted diseases in Europe because the dangerous pathogens are found only in the tropics and subtropics.

IN SOUTHERN EUROPE, HEAVY

In Spain and Italy, the five-millimeter-sized Asian tiger mosquitoes gained a foothold many years ago and have become a plague in places. It is believed that they were brought in from the Far East with a boatload of old car tires full of small puddles of water. A few years ago, the insects were spotted in France and southern Switzerland, but not yet in Germany and Austria. The small aggressive mosquitoes cause painful, itchy stings that are easily inflamed.
In her homeland in Southeast Asia, the tiger mosquito transmits about 20 diseases, including dengue fever. The widespread viral disease is with up to 100 million new infections per year among the most common diseases that are transmitted by mosquito bites. It takes a silent course in 90 percent of all cases, ie without acute symptoms. In the other cases, there are strong attacks of fever, headache and body aches and rashes. The approximately 14-day acute phase is followed by a recovery phase lasting several weeks. In about 3-5 percent of the patients, mostly children or adolescents, the dengue fever is fatal.
Fortunately, newcomers from Asia have so far not transmitted diseases in Europe because the dangerous pathogens are found only in the tropics and subtropics.

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