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In Paris, tiger mosquito brigades monitor its proliferation before the Olympics



Kevin Meignan, wearing a yellow vest, ducks into a bush a stone’s throw from the imposing Stade de France, north of Paris. A few moments later, he emerges with a small plastic bucket filled with water, on which a piece of polystyrene floats.

“We’ll send it to the lab to see if there are any eggs in there,” he explains, putting the piece of polystyrene in a plastic bag, “This is exactly the kind of place where female mosquitoes can come and lay their eggs.”

Kevin Meignan is part of a team tasked with monitoring the proliferation ofAedes albopictus, better known as the (Asian) “tiger mosquito,” in the French capital ahead of the Olympics. Indeed, the blood-sucking critter is thriving thanks to increased global travel, urbanization and warmer, wetter weather conditions linked to human-induced climate change.

1er In May, the Greater Paris regional health agency (ARS) launched a surveillance campaign “reinforced” the presence of mosquitoes in the city and its suburbs. It includes the installation of 526 egg-laying traps, which will be sent for analysis once a month.

The operation, which will last until November, reflects an intensification of actions to protect Parisians from tropical diseases. The Olympic Games, which will be held in Paris and other French cities between July 26 and August 11, have been recognized as presenting a significant risk of disease transmission, with its 16 million visitors expected.

“It is true that the Olympic Games will be a critical moment,” believes Cécile Somarriba, director of monitoring and health security at the ARS, “We will focus our surveillance on places that will host the largest gatherings. That is where the risk of transmission will be highest.”

Traps have therefore been placed all around the Stade de France, the Olympic village, certain “fan zones” and in the three main Parisian airports, adds the manager.

Progress of the tiger mosquito

The Asian tiger mosquito, known for its black and white stripes on its body and legs, is capable of transmitting tropical diseases such as Zika virus infection, chikungunya and den

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