Tiger mosquito proven in Germany: Dangerous mosquitoes on the rise
Although mosquito bites are generally harmless in Germany, mosquito species that can transmit dangerous infectious diseases have now been found in Germany. In some southern European countries, certain exotic mosquitoes are now even considered to be permanent. Bloodsucking stings are best avoided.
Ideal weather for mosquitoes
Around 3,500 mosquito species are known worldwide; there are around 50 species in Germany alone. This year there is ideal weather for mosquitoes in Germany. The little bloodsuckers are not dangerous, but they can be quite uncomfortable. However, the increasing spread of exotic mosquitoes such as the Asian tiger mosquito in Germany is viewed with concern. The Federal Environment Agency reports: "Favored by globalization and global warming, more exotic mosquito species have been introduced, established and spread in Europe in the recent past."
Spread of exotic mosquito species
The names include Aedes albopictus (Asian tiger mosquito), Aedes aegypti (yellow fever mosquito) and Aedes japonicus (Asian bush mosquito). Since some of them are considered to be efficient transmitters of human and animal pathogens, their geographical occurrence is closely monitored by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the ECDC (European Center for Disease Prevention and Control), among others. The Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical Medicine (BNI) had also pointed out the spread to Japanese bush mosquitos and tiger mosquitoes in the past.
Settlements of the Asian bush mosquito in Germany
A project established by the Leibniz Center for Agricultural Landscape Research (ZALF) and the Friedrich-Loeffler-Institut (FLI), Federal Research Institute for Animal Health, maps when, where and with which species the mosquitoes occur in Germany. According to a message from the ZALF, the scientists were able to prove that the Asian bush mosquito settled in North Rhine-Westphalia, Rhineland-Palatinate, Lower Saxony, Baden-Württemberg, Bavaria and Thuringia. The Asian tiger mosquito, which is regarded as a potential transmitter of pathogens, was found in Baden-Württemberg and Thuringia.
Research came to a standstill after the eradication of malaria
Dr. Doreen Walther from ZALF assumes that we will not be able to get rid of the Asian bush mosquito in Germany. The mosquito, which can transmit West Nile fever among other things, copes very well with the climate in Central Europe. The tiger mosquito, which can carry dengue fever or chikungunya fever, has apparently already managed to hibernate in our latitudes. Since malaria was eradicated in Germany, research on mosquitoes has come to a standstill - until 2006, thousands of cattle and sheep died from bluetongue (Schmallenberg virus). This ensured that scientists saw an urgent need for action. For example, the mosquito atlas was initiated in 2012 in order to be able to gain insights into mosquitoes across the board and from remote areas. There are other plans.
It says in a message: "In the long term, it is planned to follow the mosquito atlas comparable projects for other bloodsuckers and potential transmitters of pathogens, such as ticks, gnats, black mosquitoes and brakes. In this way, for example, a tick atlas would be created. "
Protect from stitches
In some European countries into which exotic mosquitoes have migrated, "local or regional control measures are regularly taken to prevent the establishment and spread of the species and / or the transmission of pathogens," explained the Federal Environment Agency. However, previous control activities were less successful the later they were used. So to protect yourself from infectious diseases, you should know what helps against annoying mosquitoes. You can't escape them completely, but with the help of special mosquito sprays you can keep most of the bloodsuckers away. You can also protect yourself from bites at home or in the tent with mosquito nets and outdoors with bright, skin-covering clothing.
According to research, the bloodsuckers are attracted to bad odors such as sweat or smelly socks. So this should be avoided. Experts advise against the use of UV lamps and similar electrical insect killers. On the one hand, their effectiveness is limited anyway. And on the other hand, one should not reduce the mosquito population in this country, since the annoying nuisances biologically have a point. For example, their eggs and larvae are an important link in the food chain. Also read: The best home remedies for mosquitoes. (ad)