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Biting flies in Canada: Are They Worse Than They Used to Be?
Monday, September 25 @ 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm
The nemesis to summer BBQs, camping, and soccer games, biting flies are a staple Canadian complaint. But as much as we’re irritated by bites and stings, it’s the diseases carried by these creatures that are the real concern. Are animals (including humans) at greater risk of contracting arthropod-borne diseases now than they were a century ago? September’s presentation will address this question as well as examine changes in species distributions and the resulting affects on potential bloodmeal hosts. Mark your calendars for this engaging talk on such a current and important issue.
For nearly twenty years, Dr. Fiona Hunter has worked as a professor in the Department of Biological Sciences at Brock University, specializing in Medical and Veterinary Entomology. Previously, she received her B.Sc. (Hons) in Zoology and M.Sc. in Botany from the University of Toronto and a Ph.D. in Biology from Queen’s University. Lecturing in both her specific area of research interest and general undergraduate biology, Dr. Hunter is always trying to convert as many pre-med students as possible to the ecological and evolutionary sciences! Not only do Dr. Hunter and her graduate students conduct cutting edge research on West Nile virus transmission but, since the virus first appeared in Canada in 2001, she has worked closely with the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long Term Care as well as with the First Nations Inuit Health Branch to conduct mosquito surveillance and viral testing.