Landing response ofAedes (Stegomyia) polynesiensismosquitoes to coloured targets

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Aedes polynesiensis Marks (Diptera: Culicidae) is the primary vector of lymphatic filariasis (LF) in the island countries and territories of the South Pacific. In the development of a novel control tool, the response of Ae. polynesiensis to six different colours (three solid fabrics, two patterned fabrics and a plastic tarp) was measured using a digital photographic system. Adult mosquitoes were placed into an environmental chamber and allowed to choose between a white target and one of six experimental targets. Mosquito landing frequency and landing duration were calculated. Adult female Ae. polynesiensis preferred all of the experimental targets to the white control target. Mosquito landing frequency was highest for the solid targets (black, navy blue and red) followed in turn by the two colour pattern targets and the polyethylene target. Mosquito landing duration was greater for experimental targets when compared with white control targets. Mosquito landing frequencies did not change over time during the course of the assay. The response of male Ae. polynesiensis was also measured when exposed to a 100% cotton black target. Male mosquitoes preferred the black target to the white control target, although at levels lower than that observed in female mosquitoes. The results suggest that future investigations evaluating the visual responses of Ae. polynesiensis mosquitoes are warranted, with a special emphasis on semi-field and field-based experiments.

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