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INDEX: ALL Mosquito and Tick News and Information for High Sierra Backpackers
Tick and Mosquito News
Mosquitoes are a major issue in the High Sierra,
ticks less so the higher you go.
There are virtually no ticks at all, with the exceptions named at the bottom of the page, being composed of "exceptional" encounters along the upper flanks and crest of the Sierra Nevada Mountain Range, where the deer can carry a stray tick up.
The Winged Hazard
Mosquitoes WILL BE a significant issue from the dawn of Spring until the moisture dries out of the soils along both flanks and the crest. Each of these dates, of the beginning of Spring and the end of moisture vary every year, but we do have averages. The mosquitoes dry-out by August 15 during an "avergage" year. But the averages are changing, Spring has been coming earlier, while the swings between very wet and very dry seasons seems to be getting abrupt and more intense.
We can deal with the mosquitoes if we understand the threat and come up with a series of solutions (The 100% Soulution) that will fully protect use across the range of trail and camp circumstances we find ourselves in. This basically comes down to clothing or chemical protection, or some combination of the two.
Despite their rarity in the High Sierra Ticks are a major issue across much of California, including heavy populations in the Coastal Range from Monterey to the Oregon Border, continuing to points furthest North.
So we do Tick news along with the skeeters.
THE ERA OF BAD NEWS
NEW PLAYERS on the FIELD of PLAY
"The entry of the Asian tiger mosquito and Aedes aegypti into California presages the entry and spread of a number of terrible tropical diseases we are not going to enjoy at all."
"Aggressive nonnative mosquitoes spreading across state carry disease risk..."
Bad skeeters carrying very bad things are making entry into Ca. and the Sierra.
California Department of Health
California West Nile Reporting and Tracking
October 30, 2015:
2015 West Nile Infection Map, pdf
Health and Fitness News
2017 is going to be an epic year for mosquito populations. Be ready.
I wrote this Backpacking and Mosquitoes discussing how to protect yourself.
Tripled in 20 Years
Lyme disease researchers seek consensus as number of cases grows,
UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA - SANTA CRUZ, April 24, 2017.
High Costs of Observed Risks
Lyme disease imposes large cost on the northeast United States,
YALE SCHOOL OF FORESTRY & ENVIRONMENTAL STUDIES, April 17, 2017.
April 4, 2017
2017 is going to be a HUGE MOSQUITO POPULATION YEAR.
Expected, and this will worsen before improving
Flooding causes explosion of mosquitoes in Stanislaus County; districts to seek FEMA, funds, Mod Bee, April 3, 2017.
New study sheds light on how mosquitoes wing it,
UNIVERSITY OF OXFORD, March 30, 2017.
Race to the Bottom Nearing its End:
Saint Louis University researchers predict Zika hot spots in the US,
SAINT LOUIS UNIVERSITY, March 27, 2017.
Note that “lifestyle” was previously cited (below) as a barrier to mosquito-borne disease transmission in the USA, while this current study locates and cites what appears to be large pockets of dire poverty and third world living conditions right here in the USA.
The difference appears to be that the previous study operates under the delusion that we are still living in a middle class America with health, safety, and the standards of a society that no longer exists, and that this pretended affluence offers some kind of “protection.” The story cited above does not depend on things that don't exist any longer.
The reality we’ve created in the USA is much different than our self-deluded self-perceptions and the corporate media propaganda trumpets. Notice that our goals are now, "aspirational." Our middle class has been pushed below the event horizon of Third World Poverty in the USA. Now we Americans have been given the privilidge to aspire to the "American Dream!"
Thank your corporate-subsidized politicians and their global network of supporters for the changing weather, the surging mosquitoes, and the spread of disease and poverty their relentless, global pursuit of unrestricted greed has wrought.
March 19, 2017
For female mosquitoes, two sets of odor sensors are better than one,
VANDERBILT UNIVERSITY, March 17, 2017.
March 16, 2017
To kill ticks, target their animal hosts,
ENTOMOLOGICAL SOCIETY OF AMERICA, March 16, 2017.
Common bacterium may help control disease-bearing mosquitoes,
YALE UNIVERSITY, February 27, 2017.
New tool for combating mosquito-borne disease: Insect parasite genes,
VANDERBILT UNIVERSITY, February 27, 2017.
New malaria vaccine is fully effective in very small clinical trial,
Ars Technica, February 25, 2017.
Risk of Ross River Virus global epidemic,
UNIVERSITY OF ADELAIDE, February 21, 2017.
NIH begins study of vaccine to protect against mosquito-borne diseases,
NIH/NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF ALLERGY AND INFECTIOUS DISEASES, February 21, 2017.
For mosquito repellents, stick with the spray,
ENTOMOLOGICAL SOCIETY OF AMERICA, February 16, 2017.
Researchers unravel how ticks protect themselves from Lyme bacteria and other microbes,
UNIVERSITY OF MARYLAND SCHOOL OF MEDICINE, February 14, 2017.
Malaria superbugs threaten global malaria control,
INFECTIOUS DISEASES DATA OBSERVATORY, February 1, 2017.
Insecticides mimic melatonin, creating higher risk for diabetes,
UNIVERSITY AT BUFFALO, January 19, 2017.
January 15, 2017
Why odds are against a large Zika outbreak in the US,
ENTOMOLOGICAL SOCIETY OF AMERICA, January 3, 2017.
Aedes aegypti transmitted viruses:
Zika, yellow fever, dengue, and chikungunya
Note there are no PHYSICAL barriers to Aedes aegypti and its viral companions, only, “lifestyle.”
Why Lyme disease is common in the north, rare in the south,
US GEOLOGICAL SURVEY, January 11, 2017.
Ticks that carry Lyme disease found in eastern national parks,
ENTOMOLOGICAL SOCIETY OF AMERICA, January 3, 2017.
December 6, 2016
Growing mosquito populations linked to urbanization and DDT's slow decay,
UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA - SANTA CRUZ, December 6, 2016.
Experimental insecticide explodes mosquitoes, not honeybees,
VANDERBILT UNIVERSITY MEDICAL CENTER, December 5, 2016.
July 31, 2016
Could the deadly mosquito-borne yellow fever virus cause a Zika-like epidemic in the Americas?
Mary Ann Liebert, Inc./Genetic Engineering News, July 26, 2016.
Hybrid forms of the common house mosquito may serve as vectors between birds and humans, UNIVERSITY OF VETERINARY MEDICINE – VIENNA, April 26, 2016.
Parts of Europe may be exposed to dengue outbreaks,
UMEA UNIVERSITY, April 20, 2016.
Lyme Disease on My Mind,
NCRD, April 27, 2016.
April 19, 2016
New scientific evidence of sexual transmission of the Zika virus,
INSERM, , 4-16-16.
The Evolution of Virus
Cracking the Zika mystery,
Duke-NUS Medical School,, 4-19-16.
April 14, 2016
Zika virus may now be tied to another brain disease,
American Academy of Neurology, 4-10-16.
Structure of Zika virus determined,
NIH/National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, March 31, 2016.
Argentinian researchers develop trap for mosquito that transmits Zika,
Entomological Society of America, 4-6-16.
A warming climate puts Europe at risk for seasonal outbreaks of dengue fever,
Umea University, 4-6-16.
New experimental test detects signs of Lyme disease near time of infection,
National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), 1-12-16.
Zika: Here’s what we know about the virus alarming health experts worldwide
Despite a long history, Zika remains an enigmatic, emerging infectious disease.
Ars Technica, 1-29-16.
Zika virus likely to spread throughout the Americas, says WHO,
The Zika virus foreshadows our dystopian climate future,
Zika Virus in the Americas — Yet Another Arbovirus Threat,
The Zika Virus Is Coming to the U.S. Here’s What You Need to Know,
JCU researchers find the perfect pitch to attract male mosquitoes.
1-5-16, James Cook University.
Mosquitoes more likely to lay eggs in water sources near flowers,
1-5-16, Entomological Society of America.
Ticks that transmit Lyme disease reported in nearly half of all US counties,
Entomological Society of America, 1-18-16.
Mosquitoes are tuned to seek out temperatures that match warm-blooded hosts,
December 16th, 2015, Rockefeller University.
(More below on Mosq. "targeting.")
More Good News:
New disease-carrying mosquito arrives in B.C.
Nov. 8, 2015.
Aggressive nonnative mosquitoes spreading across state carry disease risk,
Oct 24, 2015, LAT.
The Bugs are Coming... The Bugs are Coming
First West Nile virus death reported in Los Angeles County,
LAT, September 15, 2015.
West Nile case is Marin County’s first of 2015,
Sonoma Valley Sun, September 15, 2015.
Second bird sickened by West Nile virus found in Novato,
Slowvato Retreat, August 7, 2015.
And they Will be Bigger:
Arctic mosquitoes thriving under climate change, Dartmouth study finds,
Dartmouth College, September 15, 2015.
New study unravels mystery of why deadly tick disease appears to be surging, yet fatalities have not, Oct 26, 2015, Burness Communications.
Impact of insecticides on the cognitive development of 6-year-old children,
INSERM, June 10, 2015.
New and presumably tick-borne bacterium discovered in an Austrian fox,
Nov. 27, 2015, University of Veterinary Medicine – Vienna
Researchers' discovery may explain difficulty in treating Lyme disease,
Northeastern University, June 1, 2015.
How mosquitoes are drawn to human skin and breath,
UC Riverside, 12-5-2013
Lyme Disease Cases Are 10 Times Higher Than Reported,
Bloomberg, August 19, 2013
Mosquitoes ignore repellent Deet after first exposure,
DWFP: A Battle Plan To Protect U.S. Troops From Harmful Insects,
Dept of Agriculture, full article.
Baiting mosquitoes with knowledge and proven insecticides,
Agricultural Research Service, 11-13-2012
List of diseases spread by deer tick grows, along with their range,
Am Society of Tropical Medicine, 11-12-2012.
Ticks are not a huge problem for backpackers and hikers in the High Sierra. I have infrequently seen them in high altitude zones, and only during Spring. I figured my infrequent Tick sightings (twice in twenty years) can be explained by being carried up there by deer. These are rare encounters. Ticks are not common along the High Sierra trails. Mosquitoes are.
Mosquitoes populations are huge from the moment the climbing sun of Spring melts the snow off the mountains until the soils dry in mid-Summer.
Being informed and be prepared makes torture tolerable.
You will be tortured If you are not prepared.