Tiger Mosquito Appears in South Netherlands
THE HAGUE, 02/08/13 - The tiger mosquito has appeared at a number of locations in south Netherlands. Wageningen University professor Bart Knols considers the government is being too lax regarding the dangerous exotic insect.
The tiger midge has been discovered on industrial estates in Weert and Montfoort, the Netherlands Food and Nonfood Authority (NVWA) announced Thursday. In July, the insect had already appeared in Oss. In both cases, it was found in rubber tyre imports.
The mosquito originally comes from Southeast Asia, but is nowadays also found in Southern Europe among other locations. It can in some cases spread dangerous diseases such as dengue, an acute viral disease also called breakbone fever.
Medical entomologist Bart Knols, an expert on disease-engendering insects, is not confident that the government will succeed in repulsing the fourth successive attack by the tiger mosquito. “On 8 July, the first tiger moth was discovered in Oss, but only 17 days later did measures to combat it begin.”
The insect has appeared in Oss every summer since 2010 in the neighbourhood of a big tyres importer. Knols terms it “incomprehensible” that the larva and mosquito can still enter the country.
The tiger mosquito made over 200 people ill in Italy six years ago. They caught a kind of breakbone fever, spread via the Chikungunya virus. The mosquito is now widespread in Italy.
In Asia, tyres and bamboo plants should be vaporised in Asia and only allowed to be shipped to the Netherlands thereafter, Knols suggests. Health Minister Edith Schippers does not consider this necessary. She did however sign a covenant last month with the importers of car tyres and Lucky Bamboo plants, products in which the tiger mosquito larvae lodge.