MIAMI (AP) — University of Florida researchers say they’ve found two new disease-carrying mosquito species in the state for the first time.
Entomologist Nathan Burkett-Cadena told The Miami Herald that the Aedeomyia squamipennis and Culex panocossa weren’t species he expected to find in Homestead and Florida City during an October research trip.
He says it’s a sign of environmental changes making Florida more hospitable to tropical mosquitoes.
Burkett-Cadena says both species are known to transmit viruses to humans, including West Nile. They lay their eggs on aggressive weeds floating in canals and drainage ponds.
Burkett-Cadena says the mosquitoes are among nine invasive species discovered in Florida over the last decade. Another invasive mosquito called Aedes aegypti is blamed for spreading the Zika virus, along with dengue fever and chikungunya.
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