Monmouth County Mosquito Extermination Commission

Tinton Falls, NJ, United States

Monmouth County Mosquito Extermination Commission

Tinton Falls, NJ, United States

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Faraji A.,Rutgers University | Egizi A.,Rutgers University | Fonseca D.M.,Rutgers University | Unlu I.,Rutgers University | And 4 more authors.
PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases | Year: 2014

Background: Aedes albopictus is an invasive species which continues expanding its geographic range and involvement in mosquito-borne diseases such as chikungunya and dengue. Host selection patterns by invasive mosquitoes are critically important because they increase endemic disease transmission and drive outbreaks of exotic pathogens. Traditionally, Ae. albopictus has been characterized as an opportunistic feeder, primarily feeding on mammalian hosts but occasionally acquiring blood from avian sources as well. However, limited information is available on their feeding patterns in temperate regions of their expanded range. Because of the increasing expansion and abundance of Ae. albopictus and the escalating diagnoses of exotic pathogens in travelers returning from endemic areas, we investigated the host feeding patterns of this species in newly invaded areas to further shed light on its role in disease ecology and assess the public health threat of an exotic arbovirus outbreak. Methodology/Principal Findings: We identified the vertebrate source of 165 blood meals in Ae. albopictus collected between 2008 and 2011 from urban and suburban areas in northeastern USA. We used a network of Biogents Sentinel traps, which enhance Ae. albopictus capture counts, to conduct our collections of blooded mosquitoes. We also analyzed blooded Culex mosquitoes collected alongside Ae. albopictus in order to examine the composition of the community of blood sources. We found no evidence of bias since as expected Culex blood meals were predominantly from birds (n = 149, 93.7%) with only a small proportion feeding on mammals (n = 10, 6.3%). In contrast, Aedes albopictus fed exclusively on mammalian hosts with over 90% of their blood meals derived from humans (n = 96, 58.2%) and domesticated pets (n = 38, 23.0% cats; and n = 24, 14.6% dogs). Aedes albopictus fed from humans significantly more often in suburban than in urban areas (χ2, p = 0.004) and cat-derived blood meals were greater in urban habitats (χ2, p = 0.022). Avian-derived blood meals were not detected in any of the Ae. albopictus tested. Conclusions/Significance: The high mammalian affinity of Ae. albopictus suggests that this species will be an efficient vector of mammal- and human-driven zoonoses such as La Crosse, dengue, and chikungunya viruses. The lack of blood meals obtained from birds by Ae. albopictus suggest that this species may have limited exposure to endemic avian zoonoses such as St. Louis encephalitis and West Nile virus, which already circulate in the USA. However, growing populations of Ae. albopictus in major metropolitan urban and suburban centers, make a large autochthonous outbreak of an arbovirus such as chikungunya or dengue viruses a clear and present danger. Given the difficulties of Ae. albopictus suppression, we recommend that public health practitioners and policy makers install proactive measures for the imminent mitigation of an exotic pathogen outbreak. © 2014.


Bartlett-Healy K.,Rutgers University | Healy S.P.,Monmouth County Mosquito Extermination Commission | Hamilton G.C.,Rutgers University
Journal of Medical Entomology | Year: 2011

Container-dwelling mosquitoes use a wide variety of container habitats. The bottle cap is often cited as the smallest container habitat used by container species. When containers are small, the habitat conditions can greatly affect evaporation rates that in turn can affect the species dynamics within the container. An evaporation rate model was adapted to predict evaporation rates in mosquito container habitats. In both the laboratory and field, our model was able to predict actual evaporation rates. Examples of how the model may be applied are provided by examining the likelihood of Aedes albopictus (Skuse), Aedes aegypti (L.), and Culex pipiens pipiens (L.) completing their development within small-volume containers under typical environmental conditions and a range of temperatures. Our model suggests that under minimal direct sunlight exposure, both Ae. aegypti and Ae. albopictus could develop within a bottle cap before complete evaporation. Our model shows that under the environmental conditions when a plastic field container was sampled, neither Ae. albopictus or Cx. p. pipiens could complete development in that particular container before the water evaporated. Although rainfall could replenish the habitat, the effects of evaporation would increase larval density, which could in turn further decrease developmental rates. © 2011 Entomological Society of America.


Crepeau T.N.,Monmouth County Mosquito Extermination Commission | Unlu I.,Rutgers University | Healy S.P.,Monmouth County Mosquito Extermination Commission | Farajollahi A.,Mercer County Mosquito Control | Fonseca D.M.,Rutgers University
Journal of the American Mosquito Control Association | Year: 2013

We obtained 160 Biogents Sentinel™ traps (BGS-traps) to monitor adult mosquito populations for the Area-wide Pest Management Program for the Asian tiger mosquito (Aedes albopictus) in New Jersey. We deployed between 90 and 110 BGS-traps weekly from May through October of 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011. Here we detail our experience: challenges with acquisition, defects in construction, as well as actions taken to correct problems we found and preempt them in the future. Further, we describe the impact of these problems on our research and provide a cost analysis of repairs. © 2013 by The American Mosquito Control Association, Inc.


Worobey J.,Rutgers University | Fonseca D.M.,Rutgers University | Espinosa C.,Rutgers University | Healy S.,Rutgers University | And 2 more authors.
Journal of the American Mosquito Control Association | Year: 2013

We tested the hypothesis that day-biting mosquitoes contribute to child obesity by reducing opportunities for summer outdoor play. The influence of Asian tiger mosquito (Aedes albopictus) prevalence on child outdoor physical activity was compared in 2 matched urban communities, one treated for mosquito abatement and one untreated. More time was spent outdoors by children where abatement took place. Copyright © 2013 by The American Mosquito Control Association, Inc.


Fonseca D.M.,Rutgers University | Unlu I.,Rutgers University | Crepeau T.,Monmouth County Mosquito Extermination Commission | Farajollahi A.,Mercer County Mosquito Control | And 7 more authors.
Pest Management Science | Year: 2013

Background: Aedes (Stegomyia) albopictus (Skuse) is an important disease vector and biting nuisance. During the 2009 active season, six ∼1000-parcel sites were studied, three in urban and three in suburban areas of New Jersey, United States, to examine the efficacy of standard integrated urban mosquito control strategies applied area wide. Active source reduction, larviciding, adulticiding and public education (source reduction through education) were implemented in one site in each county, an education-only approach was developed in a second site and a third site was used as an untreated experimental control. Populations were surveyed weekly with BG-Sentinel traps and ovitraps. Results: A substantial reduction in Ae. albopictus populations was achieved in urban sites, but only modest reductions in suburban sites. Education alone achieved significant reductions in urban adult Ae. albopictus. Egg catches echoed adult catches only in suburban sites. Conclusions: There are significant socioeconomic and climatic differences between urban and suburban sites that impact upon Ae. albopictus populations and the efficacy of the control methods tested. An integrated pest management approach can affect abundances, but labor-intensive, costly source reduction was not enough to maintain Ae. albopictus counts below a nuisance threshold. Nighttime adult population suppression using truck-mounted adulticides can be effective. Area-wide cost-effective strategies are necessary. © 2013 Society of Chemical Industry.


Unlu I.,Rutgers University | Farajollahi A.,Rutgers University | Rochlin I.,Rutgers University | Crepeau T.N.,Monmouth County Mosquito Extermination Commission | And 2 more authors.
Acta Tropica | Year: 2014

Suppression of Aedes albopictus populations is a substantial challenge for mosquito control programs globally because juveniles of this species are found in numerous kinds of domestic artificial containers that are difficult to detect, access, and eliminate. We conducted a multi-year assessment of the effect of different interventions to control Ae. albopictus near the northernmost geographic boundary of the species in temperate North America and deployed an array of BG-Sentinel traps for adult surveillance. Here we present the results of a comparative examination of adult sex ratios in urban and suburban areas, shifts in sex ratios after control interventions, and a discussion of the critical drivers of population dynamics of Ae. albopictus in our area. We collected significantly more male mosquitoes in urban as compared to suburban areas in June through September, but not in May ( p<. 0.001). The higher number of male mosquitoes in urban areas could be attributed to a higher number of larval habitats within a closer proximity of the surveillance traps and the lower flight dispersal of males. Following application of adulticides in urban areas, Ae. albopictus male populations were reduced by 88% on average, which was higher than the 69% reduction in female populations. The higher reduction of male mosquitoes could be attributed to the smaller body mass of the males and their higher susceptibility to adulticides. The results of this study are directly relevant to the development of suitable control strategies that depend on manipulation of males, such as the sterile insect technique. The results could also be used to refine mosquito abatement by providing more accurate methods to determine the need and timing of vector control. © 2014.


Farajollahi A.,Rutgers University | Healy S.P.,Rutgers University | Healy S.P.,Monmouth County Mosquito Extermination Commission | Unlu I.,Rutgers University | And 2 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2012

Aedes albopictus, the Asian tiger mosquito, continues expanding its geographic range and involvement in mosquito-borne diseases such as chikungunya and dengue. Vector control programs rarely attempt to suppress this diurnal species with an ultra-low volume (ULV) adulticide because for maximum efficacy applications are conducted at night. During 2009-2011 we performed experimental nighttime applications of a novel adulticide (DUET®) against field populations of Ae. albopictus within an urban site composed of approximately 1,000 parcels (home and yard) in northeastern USA. Dual applications at mid label rate of the adulticide spaced one or two days apart accomplished significantly higher control (85.0±5.4% average reduction) than single full rate applications (73.0±5.4%). Our results demonstrate that nighttime ULV adulticiding is effective in reducing Ae. albopictus abundance and highlight its potential for use as part of integrated pest management programs and during disease epidemics when reducing human illness is of paramount importance. © 2012 Farajollahi et al.


Egizi A.,Rutgers University | Healy S.P.,Monmouth County Mosquito Extermination Commission | Fonseca D.M.,Rutgers University
Infection, Genetics and Evolution | Year: 2013

Blood meal analysis (BMA) is a useful tool for epidemiologists and vector ecologists to assess which vector species are critical to disease transmission. In most current BMA assays vertebrate primers amplify DNA from a blood meal, commonly an abundant mitochondrial (mtDNA) locus, which is then sequenced and compared to known sequences in GenBank to identify its source. This technique, however, is time consuming and costly as each individual sample must be sequenced for species identification and mixed blood meals cloned prior to sequencing. Further, we found that several standard BMA vertebrate primers match sequences of the mtDNA of the Asian tiger mosquito, Aedes albopictus, making their use for blood meal identification in this species impossible. Because of the importance of Ae. albopictus as a vector of dengue and chikungunya viruses to humans, we designed a rapid assay that allows easy identification of human blood meals as well as mixed meals between human and nonhuman mammals. The assay consists of a nested PCR targeting the cytochrome b (cytb) mtDNA locus with a blocking primer in the internal PCR. The blocking primer has a 3' inverted dT modification that when used with the Stoffel Taq fragment prevents amplification of nuclear cytochrome b pseudogenes in humans and allows for the continued use of cytb in BMA studies, as it is one of the most species-rich loci in GenBank. We used our assay to examine 164 blooded specimens of Ae. albopictus from suburban coastal New Jersey and found 62% had obtained blood from humans with 7.6% mixes between human and another mammal species. We also confirmed the efficiency of our assay by comparing it with standard BMA primers on a subset of 62 blooded Ae. albopictus. While this assay was designed for use in Ae. albopictus, it will have broader application in other anthropophilic mosquitoes. © 2013 Elsevier B.V..


Marcombe S.,Rutgers University | Marcombe S.,Pasteur Institute | Farajollahi A.,Rutgers University | Healy S.P.,Monmouth County Mosquito Extermination Commission | And 3 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2014

Aedes albopictus (Skuse) is an invasive mosquito that has become an important vector of chikungunya and dengue viruses. Immature Ae. albopictus thrive in backyard household containers that require treatment with larvicides and when adult populations reach pest levels or disease transmission is ongoing, adulticiding is often required. To assess the feasibility of control of USA populations, we tested the susceptibility of Ae. albopictus to chemicals representing the main insecticide classes with different modes of action: organochlorines, organophosphates, carbamates, pyrethroids, insect growth regulators (IGR), naturalytes, and biolarvicides. We characterized a susceptible reference strain of Ae. albopictus, ATM95, and tested the susceptibility of eight USA populations to five adulticides and six larvicides. We found that USA populations are broadly susceptible to currently available larvicides and adulticides. Unexpectedly, however, we found significant resistance to dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT) in two Florida populations and in a New Jersey population. We also found resistance to malathion, an organophosphate, in Florida and New Jersey and reduced susceptibility to the IGRs pyriproxyfen and methoprene. All populations tested were fully susceptible to pyrethroids. Biochemical assays revealed a significant upregulation of GSTs in DDT-resistant populations in both larval and adult stages. Also, β-esterases were up-regulated in the populations with suspected resistance to malathion. Of note, we identified a previously unknown amino acid polymorphism (Phe → Leu) in domain III of the VGSC, in a location known to be associated with pyrethroid resistance in another container-inhabiting mosquito, Aedes aegypti L. The observed DDT resistance in populations from Florida may indicate multiple introductions of this species into the USA, possibly from tropical populations. In addition, the mechanisms underlying DDT resistance often result in pyrethroid resistance, which would undermine a remaining tool for the control of Ae. albopictus. Continued monitoring of the insecticide resistance status of this species is imperative. © 2014 Marcombe et al.


Crepeau T.N.,Monmouth County Mosquito Extermination Commission | Healy S.P.,Monmouth County Mosquito Extermination Commission | Bartlett-Healy K.,Rutgers University | Unlu I.,Rutgers University | And 2 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2013

The Biogents® Sentinel (BGS) trap is the standard tool to monitor adult Aedes (Stegomyia) albopictus (Skuse) (Diptera: Culicidae), the Asian tiger mosquito. BGS traps are commonly placed in residential properties during surveillance operations, but locations within properties may have significant differences in ambient light, temperature, and humidity (e.g. between a sunlit lawn and shady underbrush). We examined the effect of BGS trap placement on Ae. albopictus capture rates in three residential properties in Monmouth County, New Jersey, USA. In each property we visually selected locations as shade, partial shade, and sun. Traps in "partial shade" locations were under vegetation and were exposed to filtered sunlight during some parts of the day while "shaded" locations were never exposed to direct sunlight. Locations defined as "sun" were exposed to direct sunlight for large parts of the day. We placed a BGS trap in each of the three location types and used small data loggers to measure temperature, relative humidity, and light exposure at each trap during a 24-hour deployment. To address temporal variability, we made seven separate measurements from 31 August to 22 September 2010. We found that "partial shade" and "full shade" locations did not differ but that "full sun" locations had significantly higher light exposure, higher temperature, and lower humidity. Importantly, Ae. albopictus catches (males, females, or both) were consistently and significantly over 3 times higher in traps located in shaded locations. To further investigate the effects of local temperature and humidity on surveillance we examined Ae. albopictus collections from 37 BGS traps fitted with data loggers and deployed weekly from August through mid October, during the 2009 season, in three urban sites in Mercer County, NJ. We confirmed that local climate influences capture rates and that Ae. albopictus surveillance projects need to monitor trap placement carefully for maximum efficiency. © 2013 Crepeau et al.

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