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Saltmarsh Mosquito larvae found in Whangaparoa

27 May 2005

Southern Saltmarsh Mosquito larvae found in Whangaparoa

Three Southern Saltmarsh Mosquito larvae were detected during routine surveillance in Whangaparoa, 50 kilometres north of Auckland in the same place that larvae were also found in January last year.

The identification of the larvae has been confirmed and 0.42 hectares of swamp treated and further traps set.

The area was last treated a month ago and it was thought the area was free of the pest. The finding may necessitate the continuation of treatments, Ministry of Health Chief Technical Officer (Health) Sally Gilbert said.

New Zealand Biosecure experts identified the mosquito as Ochlerotatus camptorhynchus, or the Southern Saltmarsh Mosquito.

The Southern Saltmarsh Mosquito (SSM) is an aggressive daytime biter and in Australia it is known to spread disease although there is no evidence to date of this happening in New Zealand. The Southern Saltmarsh Mosquito is a known vector for Ross River Virus (RRV) in Australia

Southern saltmarsh mosquitoes have previously been found in the Hawkes Bay, Tairawhiti, Kaipara (including Whangaparoa) and Wairau. The mosquito has been successfully eradicated from the east coast of the North Island, Whitford, and Mangawhai. Attempted eradication programmes are still underway in the Kaipara (including Whangaparoa) and Wairau.

ENDS

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