Insects and Health - Flies

As flies feed and rest on food, excreta, rubbish and other unsanitary locations, they pick up and carry pathogens such as O-157 (E. Coli), as well as diseases of the skin and eyes. Some species, like Stomoxys calcitrans – the horn fly – also suck blood. Adulteration of food, drink, and other products in restaurants and food processing factories is currently a major problem.

Enterohemorrhagic E. coli (O-157)

O-157 is an enterohemorrhagic strain of the bacteria Escherichia coli, and is a cause of foodborne illness.
There was a massive outbreak of E. coli in 1982 in America, and successive outbreaks followed in North America, Europe and America, and Australia.
There are outbreaks every year in the summer.

Salmonella Food Poisoning

One of the major forms of food poisoning, salmonella food poisoning is caused by the salmonella bacterium, and is indicated by acute gastroenteritis. The principal carrier foods for the salmonella bacterium are beef, pork, chicken, and eggs, and in recent years there has been a marked increase in the incidence of salmonella-contaminated eggs. Bacteria are also found within eggs, thus special care is necessary.


Dysentery is an infectious disease that is found all over the world. It occurs with particularly high frequency in areas with low levels of hygiene. Many infection victims are people who have experience traveling overseas, although in recent years distribution of foodstuffs over a wide geographical area has meant that people who have never been abroad are also becoming infected.


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