The Washington Post

The most deadly creature on earth

You were going to say humans, right? All those guns, bombs, chemicals and G0d-knows-what-else we use to kill each other.

Okay, we're second, at 475,000 deaths annually. But it's a distant second to the lowly mosquito, which, according to Bill Gates, kills 725,000 people a year; 600,000 of them by transmitting malaria. Another 200 million people are incapacitated annually by the disease.

Gates is devoting his blog to mosquitoes this week, hoping to create a Mosquito Week to compete with the Discovery Channel's well-known Shark Week (the star of "Jaws" kills about 10 people each year), as he and his foundation continue their efforts to wipe out mosquito-borne illnesses.

Lenny Bernstein covers health and medicine. He started as an editor on the Post’s National Desk in 2000 and has worked in Metro and Sports.



Success! Check your inbox for details. You might also like:

Please enter a valid email address

See all newsletters

Show Comments

Sign up for email updates from the "Confronting the Caliphate" series.

You have signed up for the "Confronting the Caliphate" series.

Thank you for signing up
You'll receive e-mail when new stories are published in this series.
Most Read



Success! Check your inbox for details.

See all newsletters

Your Three. Video curated for you.
Next Story
Lenny Bernstein · April 29, 2014

To keep reading, please enter your email address.

You’ll also receive from The Washington Post:
  • A free 6-week digital subscription
  • Our daily newsletter in your inbox

Please enter a valid email address

I have read and agree to the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

Please indicate agreement.

Thank you.

Check your inbox. We’ve sent an email explaining how to set up an account and activate your free digital subscription.