One of these days, it will warm up for a good, long time – and we'll be worried about bugs. Dr. Samuel Dorevitch, a public health professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago, told a recent National Conference of State Legislatures gathering in Springfield that the Asian tiger mosquito has made a home in Peoria. The bug arrived in a shipment of used tires from China in 1985 and now is blamed for West Nile virus and encephalitis.
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Dorevitch says it’s an example of how illness can be introduced to a new country – or continent – by simply hitching a ride. He said the painful Chikungunya virus had not been reported in Europe until 2007, when a traveler from India to Italy brought it.