Invasive Aedes mosquitoes spreading across Southern California

From the VC Star
September 1, 2018

Officials say a couple of invasive types of mosquito known as “ankle biters” are spreading quickly throughout Southern California.

Aedes mosquitoes are responsible for itchy, painful bites across greater Los Angeles.

Aedes mosquitoes were originally found in tropical and subtropical zones, but now they’re in Southern California.

“They are spreading like wildfire,” said Susanne Kluh, director of scientific and technical services at the Greater Los Angeles County Vector Control District. “Our phones are exploding.”

There are two particularly troubling types of invasive Aedes mosquitoes in Southern California.

Aedes albopictus, also known as the Asian Tiger mosquito, arrived first, having hitched a ride with shipments of lucky bamboo from China back in 2001.

Vector control specialists monitored plant nurseries across the county, and soon stopped finding the mosquitoes in their traps. They thought the insects had been eradicated. However, in 2011, residents in El Monte began to complain about unusually aggressive, daytime-biting mosquitoes plaguing the neighborhood.

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