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Australia: Vampire-like mosquito inhabits dark underground vaults, waits to suck blood

Culex molestus is thought to have been introduced into southern Australia in the 1940s, hitching a ride into the country with travelling American military personnel. The species is known in other countries for the spread of West Nile virus. Since the 1940s, the mosquito has been found in all states except Queensland and the Northern Territory. Where exactly the mosquito came from before arriving in Australia is still a mystery but it is well known from cities in the US and Europe. The mosquito infamously made a meal of Londoners sleeping in the Underground during the Blitz and is often commonly referred to as the London Underground Mosquito. The culex species, although not necessarily Culex molestus, has been implicated in the spread of diverse diseases which include Eastern Equine Encephalitis, Japanese Encephalitis Virus, St. Louis Encephalitis, and Western Equine Encephalitis.

Climate change, zoonosias, and human expansion: Virolution, Hendra Virus, Plague and Malaria

Human population growth, deforestation and epidemics, Frank Ryan's theory in Virolution: Recently I listened to Lord Monkton whilst looking at his slides about global warming. Why did I listen to Lord Monkton? Because I was irritated at the ad hominem and unscientific religious terminology of some of those trying to combat global-warming-denialist arguments. Before he ever got to global warming science, however I became frustrated at Lord Monkton’s simplistic opinions about the use of DDT and malaria rates. Didn’t he realize that the application of DDT failed with malaria as the mosquitoes adapted their habits to avoid the use of the poison and as they developed immunity to its effects? But the disease of malaria and that of other zoonosias is far more complicated than that because these kinds of disease involve a wide range of mosquito and other vectors with many different habits, in a wide range of landscapes among a wide range of humans with many different habits. Cites some little-known research from French epidemiologist historian Chantal Beauchamp. I hope the reader will find the following discussion interesting and possibly contribute more discussion. Much of this article comes from a book in progress by Sheila Newman (me) about population numbers and capitalism.

Greens, logging, forest fires and malaria

Just got another email about who's supposedly to blame for the forest fires. Looks to me like the mainstream press is out to stir people up again and put them off voting for Greens or defending forests and wildlife. The latest email even accused 'Greens' of causing deaths from malaria by saying that DDT is bad. These 'anti-greens' never get it right, do they? Malaria is exacerbated by clearing forests, which they are in favour of...

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