The most dangerous animal to human beings measured by the number of people killed is not the lion or the shark or any other animal renowned for its ferocity. The animal that kills the largest number of human beings worldwide is the tiny mosquito.
Meaning “little fly” in Spanish, this miniscule insect is present everywhere in the world except Antarctica and a few islands in the polar and sub polar regions. While feeding of the blood of human beings and other vertebrates, mosquitoes transmit viruses and parasites into the blood of the host. As a result, the mosquito is a carrier for a variety of lethal diseases. The diseases spread by mosquitoes are: malaria, dengue, West Nile virus, chikungunya, yellow fever, filariasis, St Louis Encephalitis, Eastern equine Encephalitis, Western equine Encephalitis, Venezuelan equine encephalitis, Japanese Encephalitis, La Crosse Encephalitis and Zika fever.
Around a million people die because of mosquito-borne diseases and many millions of people are infected every year. Malaria, caused by parasitic protozoans and transmitted by the female Anopheles mosquito is the most common of mosquito-borne diseases killing around 600,000 people and infecting millions of people around the world. Although this disease has been eradicated in the United States and Europe, it continues to ravage Africa and other third world countries. Large-scale efforts are going on to eradicate this disease all over the world.
Yellow Fever is another deadly disease transmitted by the female Aedes Aegypti, this disease originated in Africa and spread to other parts of the world in the seventeenth and eighteenth century. After successful eradication campaigns in North America and a massive reduction in the number of cases in South America in the first half of the twentieth century, the number of cases of yellow fever is increasing in South America. In Africa, efforts to eradicate yellow fever have not been successful and around 90% of the infections are estimated to occur in Africa.
The main reason why mosquitoes are a potent threat to human beings is because over many generations, they tend to develop resistance to chemicals meant to destroy them. The rise in the number of Yellow Fever cases in South America corroborates this fact. Also, they can transmit diseases that exist in animals to human beings. The Zika Virus outbreak in 2015-16 is a good example of this fact. Owing to the grave danger posed by mosquito borne diseases, preventing the breeding of mosquitoes is an essential strategy in to eradicate mosquito-borne diseases. PestBusters, a pest control services based in Singapore, has significant expertise in preventing mosquitoes from breeding.