Draft environmental assessment released for using modified mosquitoes to save native birds on Kauaʻi

Anonymous,  Big Island NOW,  2023.

Today, the draft environmental assessment was made public for the use of Wolbachia-based incompatible male mosquitoes on Kauaʻi to stop the spread of avian malaria that is decimating native forest bird populations. The public has 31 days — from June 23 until July 24 — to comment on the draft, which was released by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the State of Hawaiʻi Division of Forestry and Wildlife. Hawaiʻi’s forest birds are facing an extinction crisis, with avian malaria a major factor. It is transmitted by non-native mosquitoes and just a single bite from an infected mosquito can be deadly. Of Kauaʻi’s 16 native honeycreepers, 10 have gone extinct and three are listed under the Endangered Species Act as threatened or endangered.

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