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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Gainesville, Florida » Center for Medical, Agricultural and Veterinary Entomology » Mosquito and Fly Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #283917

Research Project: BITING ARTHROPODS: INTEGRATED PEST MANAGEMENT

Location: Mosquito and Fly Research

Title: Implications for operational control of adult mosquito production in cisterns and wells in St. Augustine, Florida using attractive sugar baits

Author
item Qualls, Whitney
item Xue, Rudy
item Revay, E
item Allan, Sandra - Sandy
item Muller, Gunter

Submitted to: ACTA TROPICA
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/11/2012
Publication Date: 11/1/2012
Citation: Qualls, W.A., Xue, R., Revay, E.E., Allan, S.A., Muller, G.C. 2012. Implications for operational control of adult mosquito production in cisterns and wells in St. Augustine, Florida using attractive sugar baits. Acta Tropica. 124:158-161.

Interpretive Summary: Mosquitoes in residential areas are of great concern due to their nuisance and disease transmission potential. Control of these species is often confounded by the diversity of larval breeding habitats, public concern with aerial spray programs and the presence of ecologically sensitive areas. In urban areas, cisterns and wells serve as larval breeding sites and sources of emerging mosquitoes. For survival, both males and female mosquitoes frequently feed on sugar source such as flowers to replenish their nutritional reserves. In this study conducted in association with a scientist at USDA’s Center for Medical, Agricultural and Veterinary Entomology (CMAVE) laboratory in Gainesville (Florida), sugar-baits containing dye were placed in wells and cisterns. The high percentage (90%) of emerging mosquitoes marked with the dye indicated the most mosquitoes were sugar-feeding in close proximity to the larval habitat. This preliminary study indicates that use of a toxicant in the sugar bait may provide an effective means for control of mosquitoes with minimal use and impact of pesticide.

Technical Abstract: The aim of this study was to further investigate the use of attractive sugar baits as an effective, inexpensive, and environmentally friendly tool for integrated mosquito management programs. Mosquitoes were offered dyed sugar bait in wells and cisterns in an urban tourist area in St. Augustine, Florida. Exit traps were constructed to cover the well and cistern openings so the number of resting and emerging mosquitoes stained by feeding on the sugar bait could be monitored. Four mosquito species were found resting and emerging in the wells and cisterns: Aedes albopictus (Skuse), Anopheles crucians (Wiedemann), Culex quinquefasciatus Say, and Toxorhynchites rutilus rutilus (Coquillett). Overall, 90% (1482/1644) of the mosquitoes trapped were stained. In general, the number of mosquitoes stained was significantly higher in wells (P < 0.0001) and cisterns (P < 0.0001) than the numbers that were not stained by the colored bait. There were no significant differences in the number of resting and emerging mosquitoes that were stained (P > 0.01). Based on the number of mosquitoes stained, we would have expected mosquito mortality had the sugar bait been spiked with an oral toxin. The results of this study again support the concept of using attractive toxic sugar baits (ATSB) as an effective tool for integrated mosquito management.