A state Department of Agriculture committee is contemplating whether or not to permit the importation of three species of mosquitoes — all of that are already current in Hawaii — as a part of efforts to introduce incompatible male mosquitoes to wild populations which can be decimating native chicken species.
The division’s Plant and Animal Advisory Committee is assembly in the present day to debate itemizing the mosquito species on its Restricted Species List A, permitting for importation of the southern home mosquito (Culex quinquefasciatus), which is accountable for sharp declines within the populations of many honeycreeper species on Maui, Kauai and Hawaii island, in addition to the yellow fever mosquito (Aedes aegypti) and Asian tiger mosquito (Aedes albopictus), which transmit human ailments.
A group of businesses and organizations working underneath the Birds, Not Mosquitoes partnership plans to introduce a mosquito contraception into chicken habitats to try to cease avian malaria from killing the final remaining populations of endangered Hawaiian honeycreeper species, a few of which have fewer than 100 people within the wild and are anticipated to go extinct in lower than two years, in keeping with a information launch from the state Department of Land and Natural Resources on Wednesday.
The contraception methodology makes use of male mosquitoes, which don’t chew, with a pressure of a bacterium known as Wolbachia that’s incompatible with the pressure of Wolbachia at the moment present in wild mosquitoes in Hawaii. When these male mosquitoes mate with females within the forest, the eggs don’t hatch and the mosquito inhabitants dimension drops. No genes are modified within the mosquito or within the Wolbachia micro organism, opposite to claims on social media, DLNR stated.
“It’s disappointing that some people are misinforming others by saying this is using GMOs or GEs. These are not genetically modified or engineered organisms,” DLNR Chairperson Suzanne Case stated. “The proposed technique does not modify the genes of mosquitoes or Wolbachia. It is similar process to taking antibiotics, then eating probiotics, to replace the existing community of bacteria with a different community within your stomach.”
The strategy is being utilized in 15 completely different international locations, together with on the continental U.S., in keeping with the DLNR.
The Wolbachia micro organism being implanted already happens in Hawaii and happens within the Aedes mosquito genus. The completely different Wolbachia strains within the Culex species of mosquitoes will make the women and men produce infertile eggs, DLNR stated.
All three of the mosquito species up for restricted itemizing are recognized to hold human ailments in Hawaii. Listing the species will allow the state Department of Health to make the most of this instrument to cut back populations of mosquitoes of well being concern in a protected, focused method, with out the usage of chemical pesticides, DLNR stated.
“We need these Wolbachia-incompatible male mosquitoes to be listed so that importation can commence,” stated the Birds, Not Mosquitoes partnership, which is guided by the state’s prime scientists and researchers with a long time of expertise finding out Hawaii’s forest birds and mosquitoes.
To submit public testimony by 4 p.m. in the present day, contact Inspection and Compliance Section Chief Jonathan Ho by e mail at Jonathan.Okay.Ho@hawaii.gov or by fax at (808) 832-0582.
“Hawaii Plant and Animal Advisory Committee on Proposal to Add Three Mosquito Species to List of Restricted Animals” needs to be included within the topic line.