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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: AERIAL APPLICATION RESEARCH FOR EFFICIENT CROP PRODUCTION Title: Quantifying the movement of multiple insects using an optical insect counter

Authors
item Hoffmann, Wesley
item Jank, Philip
item Klun, Jerome
item Fritz, Bradley

Submitted to: Journal of the American Mosquito Control Association
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: February 16, 2010
Publication Date: June 18, 2010
Citation: Hoffmann, W.C., Jank, P.C., Klun, J.A., Fritz, B.K. 2010. Quantifying the movement of multiple insects using an optical insect counter. Journal of the American Mosquito Control Association. 26:167-171.

Interpretive Summary: Insect counting has long been of entomological importance and automation of the process has always been of keen interest. An optical insect counter (OIC) was designed and tested using an integrated line-scan camera and a vertical light sheet along with data collection and image processing software to count numbers of flying insects crossing a vertical plane defined by the light sheet. The OIC system was successfully tested using a preliminary experimental protocol for determining preference or avoidance of groups of flying mosquitoes to attractants and repellents in a flight tunnel. The system provides a straightforward and reliable method for measuring and recording insect spatial and temporal information as they pass through an established plane and will aid researchers in developing new insect repellents.

Technical Abstract: An optical insect counter (OIC) was designed and tested. The new system integrated a line-scan camera and a vertical light sheet along with data collection and image processing software to count numbers of flying insects crossing a vertical plane defined by the light sheet. The system also allows for positional discrimination of each insect along the horizontal length defined by the light sheet. The system was successfully tested using a preliminary experimental protocol for determining preference or avoidance of groups of flying mosquitoes to attractants and repellents in a flight tunnel. System-verification testing showed that the OIC counted the number of mosquitoes that crossed the light sheet, and recorded the horizontal position and time at which each insect passed through the light sheet. Future iterations of the system are anticipated to provide reliable insect velocity data as well as two dimensional-positional data. The system provides a straightforward and reliable method for measuring and recording insect spatial and temporal information as they pass through an established plane.

Last Modified: 4/18/2014
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