Die, Bloodsuckers, Die

The “mosquito bat,” as it is known in Indian circles, is a most cathartic way to vanquish bugs.

The most unwelcome sort of wildlife here in South India is the mosquitoes. They are tinier, stealthier versions of their American cousins and are far more dangerous, carrying malaria and (most recently) an outbreak of dengue fever. This emergency calls for…the mosquito bat!

That isn’t its actual name — on Amazon it’s called an electronic insect catcher — but as with so many things, India has found its own odd terminology. I saw a mosquito bat leaning on the wall while we were visiting the house of my wife’s aunt Hemathe, which for some reason is always alive with the little buggers.

1) Switch on the mosquito bat; 2) swing it in the general direction of the mosquitoes with the alacrity of Aggasi; and 3)  ZAP! ZAP! BZZT! The mesh layers of the bat light up with blue flashes. Each flash is a kill. The little buggers are not just incinerated, but vaporized. Not even a wing or mouthpart remains.

I got so enthusiastic with the mosquito bat that the air got a little smoky and smelled of ionized violence.

To learn more about the local mosquito plague, check out my my most recent posts on Forbes:

Facing Dengue Epidemic, India Turns to Genetically Modified Mosquitoes

Is Ancient ‘Mocktail’ The Answer to Dengue Fever?

 

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