What Darwin Never Knew + Genetically Modified Mosquitos Possibly to be released?

Chaetodipus_intermedius Image Source

The documentary that we watched in class was more of a review to me. After two years of an IB Biology course in high school, I swore to never dip my foot into it again, but here I am taking Biodiversity. I can’t help it though, science (especially biology) is interesting to me. I honestly had no idea what to write about until I saw many classmates discussing evolution on the blog and asking questions that I don’t think the documentary quite cleared up. The animals on the Galapagos islands didn’t all just magically mutate (though mutation is one of the big factors in determining whether a species has a new advantage or not), but through many years have adapted to their environment. “Survival of the fittest” is the term I’ve learned to use to describe this adaptation. The finches living on the island with only tough seeds as food will need to have tough beaks as well. The more advantageous in situations such as this will survive to pass on their genes for future generations, thus narrowing the gene pool on that island. The same goes for the beige and black mice. “Natural selection” is another term that fits this scenario. In all cases (please correct me if I’m wrong), the environment in which the organism lives in will determine their future. If they are not fit ( Black mice on light sand and beige mice on black sand), natural selection occurs and only those with the superior genes (does not always mean the biggest and strongest) that are the most fit to survive in their environment will be able to pass on these genes.

Another topic we discussed in class was the possibility of the release of genetically modified mosquitos. It seemed to be that the majority agreed that it was not a good idea. It did, however, seem like people were thinking that mosquitos would be wiped out entirely. I doubt the extinction of the mosquito is the goal and I doubt that can actually happen. Mosquitos are dangerous disease carriers not only to animals, but to humans as well. This idea is genius in my opinion, it controls the mosquito population.

Not everyone is able to get the healthcare they need around the world. This is especially true for countries that have problems with malaria (mosquitos don’t only carry malaria but it is one of the biggest diseases). It’s almost like malaria and poverty are linked together. This is because some countries are unable to afford even the most simplest of healthcare that we take for granted here in the US. Though it also seems like poverty is geographically specific, I don’t want to get off topic. The positive outcomes is that the population of the mosquitos will greatly diminish, decreasing the amount of disease cases. I do, however, think they should really consider the risks of releasing these genetically modified mosquitos into the wild. Even if the genetically modified DNA won’t affect humans, they can affect wildlife that feed on them ( just like how GMOs affect our health) and what was once abundant food supply to predators of the mosquito will decrease. It will definitely cause a chain reaction and whether we as humans are able to take responsibility for what happens afterwards is uncertain, but I believe that we won’t be able to.


Image source


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s