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Pest Control: Two for the Price of One

March 12, 2018

Originally sourced from Hakai Magazine

Researchers unintentionally eradicated the Asian tiger mosquito from Palmyra Atoll.

 

"Like most islands visited by humans over the past few hundred years, Palmyra Atoll was once home to tens of thousands of introduced rats. But an intensive campaign by biologists from the Nature Conservancy (TNC) and the US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) has rendered the island rat-free.

 

Yet in doing away with Palmyra’s furry pests, the scientists inadvertently rid the islands of another persistent scourge—the introduced Asian tiger mosquito, Aedes albopictus. It’s the first documented case of a mosquito being wiped out by eradicating its mammalian host, and the discovery points an intriguing way forward in the long-running war to control