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INDEX: ALL Mosquito and Tick News and Information for High Sierra Backpackers sticky icon

Tick and Mosquito News
Mosquitoes are a major issue in the High Sierra,

ticks less so the higher you go.


November 9, 2018





Also See
Mosquitoes and Seasonal Temperature Shifts:
Backpacking the High Sierra



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.

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US Anopheles Skeeter Spreading New Mayaro Virus in US?


Another US Skeeter Spreading Another New Disease?

Anopheles mosquitoes could spread Mayaro virus in US, other diverse regions,
Penn State, November 8, 2018.


New Disease, Mayaro Virus
"Mosquitoes of the genus Anopheles are well known as primary vectors of malaria. But a new study suggests that Anopheles species, including some found in the United States, also are capable of carrying and transmitting an emerging pathogen, Mayaro virus, which has caused outbreaks of disease in South America and the Caribbean."

Widespread Concerns
"...imported cases may be on the rise, with several reported recently in the Netherlands, Germany, France and Switzerland."

Regional Skeeter Suitability
"In this study, the researchers tested six mosquito species -- Aedes aegypti, Anopheles freeborni, An. gambiae, An. quadrimaculatus, An. stephensi and Culex quinquefasciatus -- for their ability to transmit two strains of the Mayaro virus."

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Climate Change Triggering Return of New, & Eradicated Mosquitos & diseases


It’s Already Happening...

Could climate change trigger the return of eradicated mosquito-related disease?
University of Bath, November 5, 2018.


New Ranges
“The largest ever study of the mosquito evolutionary tree, going back 195 million years, suggests that present-day climate change could result in the spread and return of dangerous mosquito-borne diseases to new places or areas where they had previously been eradicated.”

Return of the Classics
“...– including malaria, Yellow fever, Zika virus, and Dengue fever – cause millions of deaths each year. While many of these diseases have been eradicated from Europe and are under control in other parts of the world, resurgence is always possible.”

Bonus for the Skeeters
They Like Heat AND CO2
“...the rate at which new species of mosquitoes evolve generally increases when levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide are higher. This is concerning because the greater the number of mosquito species, the more potential exists for new ways of vectoring diseases, and perhaps for new variants of those diseases.”

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Picaridin Saving more Skeeters than it’s Killing?


Picaridin Saving more Skeeters than it’s Killing?

Widely used mosquito repellent proves lethal to larval salamanders,
Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies, October 31, 2018.


Chemical Defense
“Insect repellents are a defense against mosquito bites and mosquito-borne diseases like dengue, chikungunya, Zika, and West Nile virus.”

Natural Defense
“Salamanders provide natural mosquito control. During their aquatic juvenile phase, they forage on mosquito larvae, keeping populations of these nuisance insects in check.”

The Two Don’t Mix
“Chemicals in repellents enter aquatic ecosystems through sewage effluent and are now common in surface waters.”

More Skeeters?
“The paper is the first to suggest that environmentally realistic concentrations of picaridin-containing repellents in surface waters may increase the abundance of adult mosquitoes due to a decrease in predation pressure on mosquitoes at the larval stages.”

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How DEET Works

Scientists investigate how DEET confuses countless critters,
Rockefeller University, September 26, 2018.


“...shown that DEET acts not by repelling bugs, but rather by confusing them, messing with neurons that help the animals smell their surroundings. Moreover, the effects of DEET are not limited to insects: spiders, ticks, and many other pests also act strangely in the chemical's presence.”

“...DEET may be less of an insect repellent and more of an invertebrate confusant.”

“First developed in the 1940s, DEET can be found in most bug sprays used today. Research has shown that, in flies and mosquitoes, the chemical works by interacting with odor receptors that are unique to insects. This research, however, cannot explain how DEET exerts its effect on non-insect species.”

“The Vosshall lab previously demonstrated that DEET keeps mosquitoes away by interacting with odor receptors in a way that confuses the animals' sense of smell. ”

"The one common theme in all of these organisms is that DEET is doing something to affect odor perception--it's like sensory system sabotage.”


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SKEETER TECH: Mosquito’s Resonant and Discordant Hearing


Skeeter’s Resonant and Discordant Hearing

Built-in sound amplifier helps male mosquitoes find females,
University College London, September 25, 2018.


“The ears of male mosquitoes amplify the sound of an approaching female using a self-generated phantom tone that mimics the female's wingbeats, which increases the ear's acoustic input by a factor of up to 45,000...”


Bad Dudes
“...studied three mosquito species: the malaria-carrying Anopheles gambiae, the Zika virus and dengue carrying Aedes aegypti and the West Nile virus carrying Culex quinquefasciatus.”


The Objective
“...mate in swarms, which are typically mostly formed of males with only one or a few females entering at a time, so the males need to pick out the sound of an approaching female from the noise of surrounding males. ”


Resonant Amplification
“...investigating why the flagella (lash-like protrusions) of the male antennae (mosquitoes hear with their antennae) can vibrate spontaneously at roughly the same frequency of the female wingbeat.”


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Global Mosquito Movement, Asian tiger mosquito on the move


Global Mosquito Movement

Zika, Dengue, West Nile, & Chikungunya Move with Them

Asian tiger mosquito on the move,
Goethe University Frankfurt, May 18, 2018.

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SKEETER BEHAVIOR: Mosquitoes bite when thirsty, too



Mosquitoes bite when thirsty, too,
University of Cincinnati, May 1, 2018.

"...female mosquitoes bite not only to get the protein they need to lay eggs but also to quench their thirst during a drought."

"...research found that dry conditions provide little protection from the biting pests."

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Skeeter News: Fantastic Cure for West Nile Disease?


Skeeter News

Fantastic Cure for West Nile Disease?

Researchers develop a novel RNA-based therapy to target West Nile virus,
Yale University, March 29, 2018.

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SKEETER NEWS 2018: Warming Climate Spreading Skeeters, Ticks, & their Diseases



Warming Climate Spreading Skeeters, Ticks, & their Diseases

Climate change promotes the spread of mosquito and tick-borne viruses,
European Commission Joint Research Centre, March 16, 2018.


Threat Levels

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High Sierra Health & Fitness: 2018 Winter Mosquitoes, Owens Valley


Winter Mosquitoes 2018

Owens Valley

Skeeters Rise in Unseasonable Heat

Warm weather awakens mosquitoes,
Sierra Wave, February 11, 2018.

" increase in reports from residents seeing mosquitoes this February due to the unseasonably warm weather..."

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Mosquito News, Skeeter strategies: Positive and Negative Memories


Mosquito News
Skeeter strategies: Positive and Negative Memories

Scent, Experience, Memory, and Behavior

Mosquitoes remember human smells, but also swats, researchers find,
Virginia Tech, January 25, 2018.

"...mosquitoes can rapidly learn and remember the smells of hosts..."

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HEALTH & FITNESS, West Nile Disease: Memory Loss Preventable? News and Information



West Nile Disease

Memory Loss Preventable?

Memory loss from West Nile virus may be preventable,
Washington University School of Medicine, January 16, 2018.

"More than 10,000 people in the United States are living with memory loss and other persistent neurological problems that occur after West Nile virus infects the brain."

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Skeeter News: Skeeters Defy Technology, show Their Genetic Tech Superior to Human Technology


Skeeter News
Skeeters Defy Technology

Natural Genetic Tech Superior to Human Technology

Genetic changes help mosquitoes survive pesticide attacks,
University of California - Riverside, January 2, 2018.

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Mosquito News: Dengue Effectiveness rises with Heat, & Information on Dengue in the USA



Mosquito News
Dengue Effectiveness Changes with Heat

A Tour-de-Force of Mosquito-Dengue in USA Information

Mosquitoes more likely to transmit dengue virus in hot weather,
FRONTIERS, December 1, 2017.



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Skeeter Tech: The Original Stealth Flyer?



Skeeter Tech

The Original Stealth Aircraft?

A mosquito's secret weapon: a light touch and strong wings,

 Interesting comparison between skeeters and fly's launching styles.


Skeeter & Tick News

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West Nile in Bishop


West Nile in Bishop

Man recovers from West Nile virus illness,
Sierra Wave, September 7, 2017,

West Nile Reports

Kings County

First Ca Human Case of 2017

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