Current and potential impacts of mosquitoes and the pathogens they vector in the Pacific region

Proceedings of the Hawaiian Entomological Society


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Mosquitoes and the pathogens they transmit are ubiquitous throughout most of the temperate and tropical regions of the world. The natural and pre-European distribution and diversity of mosquitoes and mosquito-borne diseases throughout much of the Pacific region, however, depicts a depauperate and relatively benign fauna reinforcing the dream of “paradise regained”. In the central and South Pacific few mosquito species were able to colonize the remotest islands and atolls. Native mosquitoes are limited to a few far-ranging species and island endemics are typically restricted to the genera of Aedes and Culex. Only lymphatic filariasis appears to have been present as an endemic mosquito-borne disease before European contact.

In nearby Australia, however, some 242 species of mosquitoes are known to occur and more than 70 arboviruses have been identified (Mackenzie 1999). In this regard Australia is more similar to the rest of the tropic and subtropical world than the smaller islands of Oceania. In our ever-shrinking world of global commerce, military activity and travel, the nature of mosquito-borne disease in the Pacific was bound to change. This paper is a brief summary of introduced mosquitoes in the Pacific and their potential impacts on human and wildlife health.

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Current and potential impacts of mosquitoes and the pathogens they vector in the Pacific region
Series title Proceedings of the Hawaiian Entomological Society
Volume 39
Year Published 2007
Language English
Publisher Hawaiian Entomological Society
Publisher location Honolulu, HI
Contributing office(s) Pacific Island Ecosystems Research Center
First page 75
Last page 81
Other Geospatial Pacific Region
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