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Int J Parasitol. 2006 Sep;36(10-11):1077-80. Epub 2006 Jul 10.

Sugar questing mosquitoes in arid areas gather on scarce blossoms that can be used for control.

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  • 1Department of Parasitology, The Kuvin Center for Study of Infectious and Tropical Diseases, The Hebrew University - Hadassah Medical School, P.O.B. 12272, Jerusalem 91120, Israel.


Floral nectar sugars provide energy for mosquito activities. We presumed that scarce flowering trees in arid areas are attractive, central sugar sources and tested the assumption in the southern desert of Israel. In traps baited with flowers of Acacia raddiana, Tamarix nilotica or Ochradenus baccatus the catch of Anopheles sergentii was approximately 35-75 times greater than with baits of flowerless branches. At a small isolated oasis, a spray of sugar and food-dye solution on the few flowering A. raddiana trees dye-labelled 80-90% of A. sergentii. At a similar oasis, this spray with addition of oral insecticide, virtually eliminated the local mosquitoes.

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