Accidental importation of the mosquito : a survey of mosquito distribution and the presence of dengue virusAedes albopictus: a survey of mosquito distribution and the presence of dengue virus into the Netherlands: a survey of mosquito distribution and the presence of dengue virus

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Abstract

In the summer of 2005, the Asian tiger mosquito, Aedes albopictus (Skuse) (Diptera: Culicidae) was found for the first time in the Netherlands. It was collected on the premises of several horticultural companies that import the ornamental plant Dracaena sanderiana (Sparagalus: Dracaenaceae [Agavaceae]), known as Lucky bamboo, from southern China, an area endemic for this mosquito species and for arboviruses transmitted by this vector. Here we report the results of a 1-year survey of the distribution and vector status of Ae. albopictus in Lucky bamboo nurseries in the Netherlands (July 2006–June 2007). As it had been established previously that the presence of this species was linked to the import of Lucky bamboo, the survey was conducted only on sites owned by relevant import companies. In total, 569 adult Ae. albopictus were collected with mosquito traps from 15 of the 17 (88%) glasshouses used by Lucky bamboo importers, none of which were found to be infected with dengue virus. On two occasions there was evidence that Ae. albopictus had escaped from the glasshouses, but, overall, there was no evidence that a population had become established in the greenhouses or elsewhere.

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