MRCU continues attack on swamp mosquitoes

| 27/05/2016 | 18 Comments
Cayman news Service

Cayman Islands MRCU aircraft

(CNS): As the Mosquito Research and Control Unit (MRCU) gears up to launch a pilot project in West Bay using genetically modified mosquitoes to try and eradicate the urban-loving, disease-carrying, invasive Aedes aegypti, the unit will be focusing on Cayman’s own swamp mosquitoes this week by more traditional methods. Officials said the seasonal aerial operations over mosquito breeding swamps in the Sister Islands and Grand Cayman started Friday, 27 May, and will continue until 3 June. 

“Operations will involve low-level flights during the mornings and late afternoons,” officials said as they alerted the public to the operation.

MRCU aircraft will drop pellets designed to stop the swamp mosquito larvae developing in water that will be activated when the rainy season begins. Swamp mosquitoes are not a public health threat, but they do bite, spread heartworm in dogs and are a nuisance throughout the islands.

The aerial operations are not used against the Aedes aegypti as they breed close to humans in their homes and yards. The aerial spraying mainly targets the black salt-marsh mosquito, which is by far the most abundant pest mosquito in the Cayman Islands.

It breeds mainly in the swamps, where the females lay their eggs in the mud, and when the water levels rise from the rains, they hatch in large numbers. These native mosquitoes will not be impacted by the bio-engineered male Aedes aegypti, which the MRCU and Oxitec will be releasing in the North West Point area of West Bay next month.

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Category: Environmental Health, Land Habitat

Comments (18)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    The dykes all plugged up now or they dont work as they once did?
    they were designed to control swamp mozzies.

  2. Unison says:

    Out of so many places in the world, we are being EXPERIMENTED ON, and this government seems to have no problems with it … I have to smh :/

    • Unison says:

      May I add that this government is NOT LISTENING to environmental and health factors that could negatively impact us and our ecosystem. LET ME REPEAT IT SEEMS THEY ARE “NOT LISTENING.”

      Another example of this is from the previous CNS article “Turtle release a time bomb says animal charity” . The article goes on to say – “A host of different diseases have been repeatedly identified in the overcrowded conditions of the Cayman Turtle Farm. Last year’s Clostridium outbreak was one of a number of problems that the farm has encountered with disease that could be passed on to wild populations when farmed turtles are released into the wild.

      “We are bitterly disappointed that the Cayman Islands government has not stepped in to prevent these releases from taking place, or for even informing us that they would happen, despite our previous agreement to maintain dialogue,” D’Cruze added.

      Well Dr. D’Cruze it looks like they have no issue against mosquitoe research on us as well – the repercussions. It seems like the scientist they are listening to are coming from one source only. :/

  3. Anonymous says:

    This will end in disaster. Come back in 6 months when there are all sorts of ailments in the release zone.
    You people are freaking batshit crazy.
    Sit behind your pompous government desk then. You are nuts!

    • anonymous says:

      It might take longer than 6 months, but it will eventually catch up with everyone! The Dump and GM mosquitoes are increasing chemical burden on your body already overloaded with it. Those who are in 50-60s now had ecologically clean startup, therefore they might last longer, but the younger generations are pretty muched doomed. Cancer, autoimmune and autonomic disorders will affect pretty much everyone. The price of the progress. There are ways to minimise chemisation of our lives, but for this this country has no leaders and visionaries.

    • Anonymous says:

      Aerial spraying will end in disaster?

  4. Anonymous says:

    Can they spray contraceptives from this plane?

  5. Anonymous says:

    Hopefully they will do something about the swampdonkeys next!

  6. Sally Foarth says:

    If the modified mosquito program works so great on the aedes aegypti mosquito, why not use it on the salt-marsh mosquito……..?

    • Anonymous says:

      The concept would work, but a modified salt-marsh mosquito has not yet been bred. Researchers started developing this approach in the A egypti mosquitoes that are major vectors of disease since control of that species is the most urgent.

    • Anonymous says:

      No reason other than someone has to breed a million f them.

  7. Sharkey says:

    I am still convinced yet how these GM mosquitoes know to stay around houses, and not go to where the targeted live , and MRCU would continue to also kill the targeted bad mosquitoes , but would not harm GM mosquitoes.

    I know that back in the 1950’s the mosquitoes problem was bad during the day in the shade of trees and really bad at night around the house or in the bushes. Then later the mosquitoe control unit came along and a few years later and that bad mosquitoes problem was to a bearable stage but not completely wiped out. What did they do then ?
    And why couldn’t that method be continued ? Why do we have to try something that we are not 100% sure what the effects would be on the human life .

    What was the results of the GM mosquitoes that was released in other countries? Do those countries still have a mosquitoes problem ?

    • Anonymous says:

      Initial control efforts stated with various insecticides… a very effective approach but unfortunately also an effective way to select for mosquitoes that are resistant to insecticides. Over time the mosquito population in Cayman has adapted to be able to tolerate the insecticides we are attempting to use to control the mosquito population – a bit like the development of antibiotic resistance in bacteria.

      The GM mosquito approach showed a substantial decline in the population of the targeted mosquito species in Cayman and Brazil in the release areas, with reductions of over 90%. But by design the GM mosquitoes die out. If there is not a sustained release program of the GM mosquitoes the population will rebound over time.

  8. Lo-cal says:

    It would be so funny if they sprayed all the just released gmo skeeters.

  9. Anonymous says:

    what is in the pellets and does it poison any of our water supply?

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