Monday, July 09, 2012

The King of Killers

What critter kills more people in the world than all others?

The mosquito.

The official mosquito-to-human kill tally:

  • Malaria -- About 40% of the world's population is susceptible to malaria, and though DDT and other mosquito-control insecticides have helped reduce the problem, malaria still kills between one and two million people a year, while infecting 300 to 500 million people annually. .

  • Yellow Fever - Every year about 200,000 cases of Yellow Fever still occur, killing about 30,000 people a year across about 30 countries. .

  • Dengue  -- Dengue infects at least fifty million people a year and more than half a million people a year become seriously ill from the disease, with 12,000- to 25,000 people a year dying from the disease.
Other disease can also be transmitted by mosquitoes, including various kinds of Encephalitis,  Elephantiasis, epidemic polyarthritis, West Nile, and Rift Valley fever.

Of course, here in the U.S. the most common disease carried by mosquitoes is dog heartworm. 

Though dog heartworm cannot be successfully transmitted to humans, it remains a serious canine health problem in the southern U.S. among those who do not treat their dogs with any of the cheap, easy-to-get heartworm medications available over the counter from farm supply stores, and by prescription from veterinary offices.


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