There’s an article in Nature saying that were mosquitoes to disappear, they would not be missed. Ecologically that is. There are, or course, significant caveats, but some scientists seem to think that the mosquitoes positive ecological niche would be quickly filled. Mosquitoes are rather horrid creatures that carry horrid diseases like malaria, dengue and chikunguniya. Less people would die were they genocided and African nations in particular would even significantly improve their GDP (due to reduced health costs and great productivity). The danger is that eliminating mosquitoes would mess up the circle of life, but at least a few scientists seem to say the disruption wouldn’t be so bad.
“They don’t occupy an unassailable niche in the environment,” says entomologist Joe Conlon, of the American Mosquito Control Association in Jacksonville, Florida. “If we eradicated them tomorrow, the ecosystems where they are active will hiccup and then get on with life. Something better or worse would take over.” (nature.com)
I have personal beef with mosquitoes because they buzz in my ear, adding insult to injury. I, hence, do not mind their elimination, provided that it doesn’t mess with the ecosystem. Indeed, only females of certain mosquito species require blood, so it’s wouldn’t be complete destruction. The only question is how. DDT can kill mosquitoes in large numbers, but it can also cause health problems in humans and they develop an immunity. Perhaps we could just find a sound that irritates them so much they want to die, which is what they’re currently doing to me.