Climate change can cause more mosquitoes. Research by Wageningen University and Research has shown that there were more mosquitoes during the heat wave in August and they also remain active longer. In mid-October, more than a quarter of the people still suffered from mosquitoes.
This can also affect the spread of the West Nile virus. De Gelderlander reports that the virus was diagnosed in six people last week. According to mosquito researcher Sander Koenraadt, that is the tip of the iceberg. He thinks that many more people have been exposed to the virus.
West Nile virus comes from birds and is transmitted by mosquitoes. Most people don’t notice it, but some get a fever and other flu-like symptoms. In about one percent of infections it can lead to a serious neurological disease such as encephalitis.
According to Koenraadt, the West Nile virus can suddenly take off and therefore steps are needed to prevent a further outbreak. He is thinking, among other things, of a national information campaign so that people better protect themselves against mosquito bites.
Also read: you can do this to prevent yourself from being punctured by mosquitoes.
Photo: ANP / EPA / JEROEN JUMELET
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