A world without mosquitoes

There are times when the Greens party and I diverge. Take the complete eradication of a species from the biosphere – those of an environmental bent would probably think that a bad thing. In the case of mosquitoes, as previously mentioned, I think it would be bloody brilliant.

Mosquitoes spread serious diseases. They bite animals and humans, provoking allergies and causing annoying itching. And they get preserved in ancient tree sap and used by mad scientists to clone dinosaurs. Basically, they’re irredeemable menaces.

Don’t fool yourself, Jimmy. If that mosquito got the chance, she’d kill you and everyone you care about.

So you can imagine my delight at the journal Nature‘s detailed investigation last month of just what would happen if we wiped the bloodsucking little bastards out. Turns out it’d probably have some mild effects in the Arctic, but otherwise the natural world seems likely to adjust pretty darn well without them.

Scientists, get exterminating. (But try to do it without poisoning the rest of us.)

ELSEWHERE: A mosquito apologist argues for caution. I say he needs to be bitten more.


11 responses to “A world without mosquitoes

  1. See I never really have a problem with mosquitos- they always go after the other half instead of me. Midges on the other hand- DDT the lot of them.

  2. I suspect people’s approach to this issue will depend on whether they’ve the mozzie-trap blood that draws them away from everybody else.

  3. Bastard mozzies! I love living here and would list mosquitoes as the number one negative for me in Australia 😉 I’ve lost many a nights sleep.

    More seriously as I understand it it’s older females that spread malaria, ie a mosquito has to live long enough to feed twice and the females live longer than the males. There is research going on into the reduction of the lifespan, this would have a massive positive impact on the rates of malaria.

    The real problem as I see it is that only Govt’s and charities (Bill Gates foundation) have any interest in tackling the malaria issue. Because middle aged middle class, wealthy white people aren’t impacted by malaria private drug companies have no interest, no, they’d rather research cures for male pattern baldness (which hurts no-one except vain men)

  4. I have a friend who reckons she never gets bitten by mossies anymore. Once on a camping trip she lay outside all night and let them go sick.

    The thing is she never gets bitten, everyone around her does.

    I dunno where she got the idea from, but Alesteir Crowley actually did the same thing and reckoned it worked.

    Another friend reckons that all you need is a chi barrier. You build it up during training (specifically during the chi kung bit at the start) then if the mossies give you the irrits later you just focus on it like you do at training.

    Personally I think they are both full of it, but neither one would ever complain about mossies.

  5. zaratoothbrush

    Maybe we should all have a pond in the backyard and stock it with Gambusia affinis.

  6. I never get bitten by mozzies. Never have. My brother is the same, so it must be something in the blood that they don’t like?

  7. “I never get bitten by mozzies. Never have. ”

    I do, I always wondered if it was because I’m a pasty white S.Walian? Now I know it isn’t…

    Here’s what attracts mossies:

    High body temp …. Check
    Unhairy (easier for the mozzie to feed) … Check
    Smelly feet (not anymore)
    Heavy Breathing – OK I snore! check.

  8. Splatterbottom

    Mozzies are tiny vampires. They know their own kind.

  9. Many of my relatives get absolutely mauled, Rob. I have no idea if some peoples are more prone than others? As for you checklist, I’d tick of each of those boxes and they still don’t seem interested.

    SB – Well, both my brother and I are incredibly pale.

  10. I had a friend visit from Cwmbran a couple of years ago, a skinny bloke, he suffered, bit on the hand, couldn’t see his knuckles for 24 hours. You’re fortunate in that regard Keri.

    By the way, is there anyway to login via the
    mobile site? Couldn’t find it, I had to login via the regular site.

  11. As someone who suffered dengue as a youngster in PNG I wholeheartedly support this idea. Kill them! Kils them all! and bugger the vegetarian Buddhist animal rights people (which includes me).

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