Despite the modest sizes, the tsetse fly is one of the most dangerous animals. Its stings are capable to cause fatal diseases of which a considerable part of the population of Africa dies.
Where the tsetse fly lives
It is insect lives in a tropical and subtropical part of Africa. The tsetse is the whole genus of flies including several types. There are certain types which live in forests, savannas and a coastal strip. Thus, these insects meet practically in any place of an area of dwelling. Tsetses are similar to the ordinary flies widespread in a midland. They have the same sizes - 1-1.5 cm, a characteristic grayish color and large mesh eyes. It is possible to distinguish them only on the pointed proboscis and wings which flies put crosswisely, one over another. If food of a typical domestic fly are a garbage from a human table and drop, then tsetses eat blood of mammals.
The tsetse fly does not attack a zebra. Because of a characteristic color, the tsetse does not perceive it as the living being.
What it is dangerous by a tsetse
The sting of a fly in itself is harmless, however the insect is a carrier of parasites of trypanosomes who cause serious diseases in the person and animals. Because of low development of health care on the African continent many people perish from these diseases. One of the most serious consequences of a sting of a tsetse is the sleeping sickness or the African trypanosomiasis. The first symptom of this disease - the itching red ulcer in the place of a sting. Later at the patient temperature rises, there is head and muscles pain, lymph nodes swell up. At later stages infected begins to rave, he has a drowsiness, irritability and confusion of consciousness. At the last stage of the patient experiences difficulties with movement and the speech and eventually dies. The disease state can last several years. On average every year more than 10000 people have trypanosomiasis. During large epidemics the disease covered about 50% of all continent.
The country where the greatest number of diseases of a sleeping sickness is registered, - Congo.
The danger of a sleeping sickness is that it is rather difficult to diagnose it. It people from poor quarters which do not worry because of sudden weakness or a headache usually are ill. Often ask for medical care already at late stages when at the patient mental health problems begin. The disease is dangerous also that it is transmitted to the child from the infected mother. Diagnosing of a disease is rather difficult - it includes capture of blood tests and cerebrospinal fluid. Very few African laboratories have possibilities of carrying out such tests. The developed countries help Africa to struggle with a sleeping sickness - they regularly examine residents of poor quarters and provide free drugs.