Location: Mosquito and Fly Research Unit
2013 Annual Report
We have maintained a network of mosquito population data providers in several regions of the U.S. and we have initiated the process of compiling and aligning population surveillance records into a single database. Population data compilation will be an ongoing effort, and processes are being developed to ease re-analysis as new data are added to the system. Data sources were targeted nationwide to maximize ecological diversity and geographic spread in order to support future phases of the population risk model that will calibrate predictions of population change based on regional climate-species idiosyncrasies. Mosquito population data from four states, Kansas, Colorado, Georgia and Florida, have been identified and prepared for initial analyses of climate-population relationships. Satellite-based vegetation index data for 1981 to present for North America were acquired from partners at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) and the image management and analysis Geographic Information System (GIS) software at the Center for Medical, Agricultural and Veterinary Entmology (CMAVE) in Gainesville, FL, was optimized to import, re-project, and perform analysis on GSFC data. Ground-based meteorological data have been acquired from National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Climate Data Center and formatted for analysis in the GIS at CMAVE. Vegetation index data and meteorological data for the four focal population regions have been prepared for analyses of climate-population relationships. We have successfully demonstrated clear relationships between changes in climate and changes in populations of medically important mosquitoes in two regions of the U.S. potentially important in a scenario of introduction of Rift Valley fever virus. Additional preliminary analyses in one region demonstrated that predictive algorithms for mosquito population change can be derived from a combination of satellite environmental data and ground-based meteorological data for some species.