Off the news: Gene-altered mosquitoes to the rescue

Star Advertiser,  2024.

A legal attempt to block deployment of genetically modified mosquitoes in a Maui forest was rejected in Circuit Court on Tuesday — cause for celebration among those hoping to save near-extinct species of Hawaiian honeycreepers. State and federal wildlife officials plan a staged release of sterile male (nonbiting) mosquitoes on the high slopes of Haleakala, crowding out breeding males to reduce the insect population. Fortunately, the challenge to the program failed: Only a very few Hawaiian honeycreepers remain, and warmer temperatures have allowed the deadly disease-carrying mosquitoes to infiltrate the birds’ only remaining island haven.


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