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Positive Influences of Insects are Unappreciated & Downplayed – Professor



A Professor of Entomology at the University of Ilorin, Adeolu Ande, has decried killing mosquitoes, saying that insects are friends to humans that deserved to be properly managed.

Ande made the statement on Monday in Ilorin in a paper he presented at a public seminar organised by the university.

In his paper with the title “Consider the ways of Ants and be Wise,” the entomologist described insects as the “most successful and influential group’’ of organisms in the biosphere.

He said that humans had a lot to learn from insects in order to be wise.

“Human life is beset with inevitable associations with insects that have over the years influenced human destiny positively and negatively. 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,” he said.

He said that positive influences of insects are unappreciated and downplayed.

He listed some of them to include: pollination of flowers, waste recycling and sustenance of the ecosystem.

Others, he said, include source of silk, shellac, cochineal, therapeutic agents, aesthetics, biological control agents and food source.

The don said that man deliberately misunderstood the role of mosquitoes and frequently described them as causing the diseases they transmit.

“In the actual sense, 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 who is forced to undertake suicide mission in its bid to provide for its unborn children.

The adult female mosquitoes have exceptional value for child raising hence the level of commitment and risk they take on the mission that entails 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.

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,” he said.

Ande said that mosquitoes had proved over the years that they are our friends and allies, adding that if we like them or not, they will exist and continue to source blood from humans.

The professor called for improvement in Zoology curriculum to ensure better focus on organisms that feature prominently around man.

He said that zoologists were expected to be the foster parents of animals in the Zoo, adding that they should be familiar with their needs and their health status.

Photo Credit: James Tiong Jim Kho | Dreamstime

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) was established by the Federal Government of Nigeria in May 1976 to gather and distribute news on Nigeria and cover events of interest to Nigeria at the international level for the benefit of the Nigerian Media and the Public.


  1. Spunky

    June 6, 2017 at 6:27 am


  2. Diamond

    June 6, 2017 at 8:08 am

    Should we stop killing mosquitoes then?

  3. Ej

    June 6, 2017 at 8:17 am

    Eleyi ti fi ori gbale

  4. Zenith

    June 6, 2017 at 9:17 am

    I hear you sir, I like intelligent discussion no matter how little they may sound. Now in this world it is survival of the fittest, a kill or get killed situation, the mosquitoes are doing what they need to do to survive and raise up offspring that only last for 21 days max (This inform is most likely wrong, Its just a guess). I am going to kill the next mosquito I see in order to survive as well. Them mosquitoes might seem like they are at the bottom of the food chain but they wreck a lot of havoc to humans. Appreciate another Human today by killing a mosquitoes now!!!

  5. L

    June 6, 2017 at 2:39 pm

    This is the thing with excerpts of a full discussion, it most times leaves out the crux of the talk.

    From an entomologist’s perspective, I think what Prof Ande is trying to say is that we should not plan on eradicating mosquitoes rather we should manage/control them.

    The thing is wiping them out, as with most other pests and vectors, is almost impossible mainly because many of them have developed resistant genes to all classes of insecticides that will ultimately lead to their resurgence, should elimination be the target. However if the goal is to control, it means that you can suppress their population below threshold levels that cause harm to man. By that I mean an integrated vector management approach is the key, which combines several control tactics apart from only insecticides to control the pest.

    For mosquitoes for example, apart from spraying your house, using an insecticide treated net, and putting screens on windows, you need to also consider source reduction by clearing stagnant water around your home and community, cleaning up the gutters, etc. to kill their immature stages before they develop to adults.

    That said, I think Prof Ande must have emphasized this in the rest of his talk, because this excerpt is somewhat misleading. It sounds as though he is advocating that we shouldn’t do anything about the mosquito palaver which is incorrect. The bloodsucking females are inadvertently harmful to man and are NOT our friends.

    Ok enough of my epistle. The story of mosquito wahala cannot contain here lol. Cheers!

  6. molarah

    June 6, 2017 at 4:05 pm

    Maybe it is BN’s editing, but I failed to see an actual benefit of mosquitoes outlined in the don’s speech. All I saw was a sentiment-based appeal, which did nothing to justify the millions of incidences and mortality cases recorded annually on account of malaria. I actually hoped to gain useful information from this article.

  7. L

    June 7, 2017 at 1:47 am

    BN where is my comment. My epistle. This isn’t fair

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