Malaria is a tropical disease, right? Actually, malaria parasites can be found as far north as Alaska—at least in birds. And a warming climate may push avian malaria even farther north by the end of the century, according to a study in the journal PLoS ONE.
疟疾是一种热带疾病，对吗？实际上，在北方遥远的阿拉斯加州也能发现疟疾寄生虫——至少曾在鸟类身上发现过 。根据一项发表在《公共科学图书馆·综合》杂志上的研究，到本世纪末气候变暖会造成禽虐疾传播到更北的地区 。
Researchers took blood from nearly 700 birds around Anchorage, Fairbanks and a truck stop called Coldfoot, Alaska, above the Arctic Circle at 67 degrees north latitude. And they found the parasite in 7 percent of the birds at the two southerly sites. Some were migrants, and may have picked up the disease down south. But others were hatchlings and resident birds—indicating the parasite can complete its full life cycle in the Great White North.
研究人员从700只鸟身上抽取了血样，这些鸟分布在北极圈北纬67度的阿拉斯加安克雷奇市，费尔班克斯市以及一个称作“Coldfoot”的卡车停车场周边 。在其中两个靠南地区发现7%的鸟类携带这种寄生虫 。一些鸟是候鸟，从南部迁徙过来时就携带有寄生虫 。但是其他的则是雏鸟和留鸟，这表明寄生虫能够在北部大雪原完成生命循环 。
The parasite doesn't seem to have hopped north of Fairbanks yet. But temperatures in the Arctic are rising at twice the global average, and researchers say malaria could cross into the Arctic Circle by 2080. Once it gets there, it could attack species like snowy owls, which have never been exposed to malaria, and may not have resistance to the disease. Talk about a buzzkill.
这种寄生虫似乎还没能“跳到”费尔班克斯市 。但是北极气温上升速度是全球平均水平的两倍，研究人员预测到2080年疟疾会进入北极圈 。疟疾一旦传播到那里就会攻击当地物种，比如雪鸮 。这种鸟类从未感染过疟疾，连抵抗能力都没有 。真扫兴！