Vector control for emerging mosquito-borne viruses in the course of climate warming [2021-2024]
The aim of the project is the evaluation of vector control measurements of West Nile virus vectors in the cause of climate warming, focusing on mass trapping of adult mosquitoes and the use of Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis (Bti) against aquatic stages in Germany. The project starts with a theoretical evaluation of different control strategies using a mechanistic population model. Laboratory and field experiments on the climate-dependent effectiveness of Bti at different concentrations are conducted. In combination with a model on the dynamics (water volume, temperature) of artificial waterbodies, a prediction model is developed based on the experimental data to estimate the required Bti concentration and frequency of application for an effective and sustainable control. Furthermore, mass trapping with CO2 traps will be carried out. Thereby, the main question is how many traps must be used for an effective reduction of the adult mosquito population. The control success is monitored by marking the mosquitoes with stable isotopes, which also allow to estimate the direction and distance of dispersal. Finally, based on the findings of the studies, different control strategies will be tested in the field and compared regarding their effectiveness.