Mosquitoes need to be controlled as they transmit communicable diseases that may threaten human health and life. They are also a nuisance that impacts on quality of life. New Zealand and international organisations have legislation that aims to protect public health.
There are 16 species of mosquitoes in New Zealand - some of which have become established within the last century. The Auckland region has 1500 kilometres of coastline, is home to two seaports, one major international airport, a military airport, a naval base and sugar company wharves, all of which provide entry points for mosquitoes. Mosquitoes are the most important bloodsucking insects that spread diseases to humans and other warm-blooded animals. They can transmit Dengue Fever, Chikungunya, Ross River Fever, Yellow Fever, malaria, West Nile virus, dog heartworm, Japanese Encephalitis and a large number of other diseases.
The New Zealand Government and the World Health Organization (WHO) have enacted a number of pieces of biosecurity legislation. Listed below are some of the principal laws and regulations:
- New Zealand legislation is available online at: www.legislation.govt.nz
- Biosecurity Act 1993
- Health Act 1956
- Health (Quarantine) Regulations 1983
- Resource Management Act 1991
- Health and Safety in Employment Act 1992
- International Health Regulations (1969 and 2005) (/www.who.int/ihr/en/)
Other useful pamphlets for mosquito response are available online from the HealthEd webpages of the NZ Ministry of Health.
The Auckland Regional Public Health (ARPHS) Biosecurity Team was formed to undertake routine mosquito surveillance, carry out mosquito audit surveys at the main mosquito gateways such as Ports of Auckland, Auckland International Airport and Royal New Zealand Airforce at Whenuapai, respond to exotic mosquito interceptions and incursions, and answer and process public complaints regarding mosquito issues in the Auckland region.
If you have any questions, please phone ARPHS on (09) 623 4600
and ask for the Health Protection Officer (HPO) on the Assessment and Management Team (AMT). Or you can ring the toll-free Mosquito Hotline number 0800 Mozzie (0800 66 99 43)
from anywhere in New Zealand.