A Professor of Entomology at the University of Ilorin, Adeolu Ande, has said that killing mosquitoes is bad, because they are ‘friends’ that deserve to be properly managed.
The professor made this submission while delivering the 169th Inaugural Lecture of the university, entitled “Consider the ways of ‘Ants’ and be Wise.”
The entomologist, who described insects as the “most successful and influential group of organisms in the biosphere”, noted that humans have a lot to learn from them in order “to get wise.”
Dwelling extensively on three of such insects- Mọ̀nímọ̀ní (Cirinaforda), mosquitoes and the honey bees, Mr. Ande observed that human life is beset with inevitable associations with insects that have over the years influenced human destiny positively and negatively.
According to him, negative influences, such as disease transmission, crop losses, food spoilage, economic losses and nuisance value caused by less than 5 per cent of insect species have been exaggerated by man, while the more extensive positive influences of insects which include pollination of flowers, waste recycling, ecosystem sustenance activities, use as source of silk, shellac, cochineal, therapeutic agents, aesthetics, biological control agents and food source are unappreciated and down-played.
He, however, opined that humans deliberately misconstrue mosquitoes’ role and frequently describe them as causing the diseases they transmit, describing it as a case of calling a dog a bad name to hang it.
He noted that in the actual sense, the mosquitoes are equally sick but inadvertently and unwillingly convey pathogens that are the real causal agents of these diseases.
“The female mosquito could be described as an example of a true mother (Abiamo tooto)”, he said, noting that it is only forced to undertake a ‘suicide mission’ in its bid to provide for its unborn children.
He explained that “adult female mosquitoes have exceptional value for child raising hence the level of commitment and risk they take on the mission that entails a decision between life and death.
“The after effect of this commitment is a well thought-out plan that forestalls most of the factors that may stand in the way of raising good children,” he said.
“I am sure most human females will not take comparable decision in the face of similar attendant risks.
“It is however certain that children born after well thought-out and risky conditions are better posited for quality living than those produced carelessly.”
For the human race to improve, Mr. Ande submitted, “our dear ladies must view child bearing as a serious business that requires fortified planning aimed at providing and ensuring quality living and survival of our offspring.”
He explained further that, “this will drastically reduce the incidence of unwanted pregnancies, street children and will surely checkmate population explosion constructively.”
The Iecturer opined that “mosquitoes have proved to us over the years that they are our friends and allies and whether we like them or not they will exist and continue to source blood from us”, adding that “unfortunately, our lack of understanding and intolerance has been largely responsible for the use of ungodly methods to handle them”.
According to him, the wise way out is to get more friendly with them and use ecologically compatible methods against them.