top of page

Birds, Not Mosquitoes

I Ola Nā Manu Nahele  -  So The Forest Birds Thrive

'anianiau on 'ōhiʻa © Jim Denny

Logo_white back.jpg

Birds, Not Mosquitoes is a multi-agency partnership urgently working to save the native Hawaiian honeycreepers from extinction. The southern house mosquito is invading the honeycreepers’ habitat and spreading a deadly disease called avian malaria. 

Together, the partnership will use naturally-occurring bacteria as a mosquito “birth control” to suppress the southern house mosquito’s populations in Hawaiʻi. Suppressing the southern house mosquito population will decrease the transmission of avian malaria among the honeycreepers and protect them from extinction.

This is a multi-phase project beginning on Maui, extending to Kauaʻi, and then expanding state-wide throughout the Hawaiian islands.

Iiwi 11x14 DSC_1971.jpg

ʻi'iwi © Jim Denny

Mosquito Birth Control

Mosquitoes carry serious diseases, including avian malaria, threatening to drive many native Hawaiian honeycreepers to extinction in the next few years.
Researchers have developed a method to transfer a naturally-occurring “birth control” bacteria to local mosquitoes in a lab as a tool to solve this problem. Only male mosquitoes would be released, which don’t bite birds or people and therefore don’t transmit diseases. These male mosquitoes would mate with wild female mosquitoes, but their eggs would not hatch.

This safe, targeted technique could drastically reduce mosquitoes in the forests the honeycreepers call home and potentially save the forest birds from extinction.

bottom of page