King Saud University professors Azzam M. Alahmed, Supervisor of Research Chair for Insect Vector-Borne Diseases (IVD), and Dr. Mohamed F. Sallam of the Plant Protection Department have co-authored a book that exams disease-carrying mosquitoes in Saudi Arabia.
The two researchers described the eleven recognized mosquito species, the most important being Culex pipiens, which is the most common type of mosquito. The Culex pipiens thrives in stagnant water and carries the larvae parasites that cause the elephantiasis disease.
Two other particular species are extreme health hazards, the Culex quinquefasciatus and the Culex tritaeniorhynchus. Culex quinquefasciatus carries the parasite that causes the watery kiss disease, while the Culex tritaeniorhynchus – that multiplies in rice irrigation water – is the main carrier of Japanese encephalitis.
Since the Rift Valley Fever epidemic affected nearly 600 Saudi residents in November of 2000, mosquitos have been a major health concern in the Kingdom.
The book starts with an introduction of Mosquito which are in the order of Diptera (flies) which have only a single pair of wings and three pairs of long, jointed legs and two long antennae.
Mosquitoes usually live in bird water plates, water tanks, old car tires, plant potteries, flood dispersal channels, vegetation irrigation channels, sewage tanks and public parks.
Doctors Al Ahmad and Sallam are members of the KSU Plant Protection Department, which is part of the College of Food and Agricultural Sciences .