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Invasive Species - Research Paper Example

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The Asian Tiger Mosquito Name Subject Teacher Date               Abstract The Asian tiger mosquito is an invasive species which has the ability to undergo genetic mutation as it interacts with various viral species and as it adapts to the low temperature of various temperate areas…
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Download file to see previous pages The Asian Tiger Mosquito The Asian tiger mosquito is one of the most highly invasive species from Southeast Asia that has found its way to the Americas, Europe, Africa and the Pacific. The main difference between this species from the other mosquitoes is that it serves as a vector of several species of virus and it does so through its unique genetic make-up as well as its excellent adaptation to the new environment. A discussion of the nature of the Asian tiger mosquito is essential in fostering awareness of a species that has a potential to be one of the most dangerous vectors of viral diseases in this planet. Awareness of a particular dangerous species brings with it the responsibility to help prevent its spread and cooperation with authorities in mitigating its harm. Findings The Asian tiger mosquito, or Aedes albopictus, is known as a vector of several emerging diseases that were once native to Southeast Asia, where the said mosquito originated, and its niche is a parasite. It is mainly an invasive species anywhere in the world except in Southeast Asia, where it is native and original (Roiz et al., 2011). The transportation of eggs mainly through used tires and Lucky Bamboo plants was the only way this insect could have spread to America, the Indo-Pacific regions, Europe and Africa. Since the first record of its presence in Italy in Genoa in 1990 during the late summer, the mosquito is believed to have spread to the rest of Italy and Europe (Roiz et al., 2011). The first discovery of the species in Europe was as early as 1979 in Albania but the country hardest hit by the invasion was Italy with around 200 cases alone in the summer of 2007. In the United States, the discovery of the mosquito was a few years later in Memphis, Tennessee in 1983 and in the next 25 years, 36 U.S. states have been invaded including several countries in Central and South America with Brazil experiencing its first Asian tiger mosquito bite in 1986. The Asian tiger mosquito is an aggressive daytime biter and is called “tiger” because of its bright white stripes. As a native of Southeast Asia, it used to be a dominant insect in the natural reservoirs including tree holes, vases, pots, buckets and vegetation. Moreover, the millions of tires shipped each year between Japan and Germany and the United States because of the use of recaps and the strict rules governing wear and tear of these tires may actually contain water that could hold Asian tiger mosquito larvae and more importantly eggs that are drought-resistant and can survive a comfortable, sheltered journey until they reach their destination (Enserink, 2008). One change that the Asian tiger mosquito has brought to the native and invaded ecosystems was disease. The Asian tiger mosquito is responsible for dengue and chikungunya fever. The chikungunya virus was believed to have undergone a single-nucleotide genetic mutation in the Indian mutation outbreak order for it to be able to use the Asian tiger mosquito as a vector (Enserink, 2008). However, although the species is less invasive than the Aedes aegypti in spreading dengue, the Asian tiger mosquito is becoming increasingly important because its global distribution is rapidly changing. Other outbreaks of diseases caused by the Asian tiger mosquito include the dengue outbreaks in Hawaii from 2001 to 2002, in China in 2004, in Madagascar in 2006, and in Gabon ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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