Listen: Building A Better Mosquito Trap — One Scientist Thinks He's Done It
"A scientific experiment is going on that could bring people who love backyard barbecues. Some joy, scientists think they've found a simple way to control mosquitoes. The approach involves two things a decidedly low tech mosquito track and getting to know your neighbors NPR's Joe palca reports the front back and side yards surrounding kit. Gauges suburban home just outside. Washington. DC can rightly be called lush. There are chameleons ferns rhododendrons and lots more. There are also three mosquito traps called gets one is hiding underneath their familia. Get stands for gravity a dis trap eighties refers to the Asian tiger mosquito. The trap is designed to catch the agent tiger is a real pest it fights aggressively night and day as we walked through the backyard gauge tips over a barrel to drain a pool of water that is formed on top. So wait a minute. Why did you do student water collects on this? Composter and remove it. Every time it rings eighties mosquitoes like to lay their eggs in standing water any puddle will do so removing puddles is key to controlling the mosquito. There's another trap at the back of the yard runs over here. Under the big beach. So do you have to do anything with these? I mean, it just looks like a bucket with a plastic bucket inverted into it. And then another plastic bucket in the top of that three plastic buckets, the top and bottom buckets are black. There's a hole in the top bucket where the mosquitoes can fly in the bottom bucket contains water with some rotting grass floating in it. The middle bucket has a net to trap any mosquitoes that hatch and the water simple. But Scott, Richie says there are several reasons why it's affected most mosquitoes or nightly attracted to black Richie invented these traps. He's at James, Cook university in Australia. Now, it's female mosquitoes that do the biting and once they're stuffed with your blood. They're ready. They eager to lay eggs. So we've got the blackness that helps bring to the trap. And then we've got this stagnant water that helps bring him actually inside the trap where they can't escape. And so. So if you trap out enough of the egg-laying mosquitoes than there aren't going to be eggs in wild. And so the population will crash, that's the theory anyway, mosquito researcher Dina fund Seca from Rutgers university's aiming to see if it works in practice. Let's look what we've done we've done one three or four and six on Seca and her son Andrei are checking the yards in kick gauges neighborhood to see if the mosquito population is really declining many of the residents here have the GATT traps and are trying to eliminate puddles of water. I don't fly very far so visit if you have most of your neighbors employing this approach and aware of what they need to do to control this mosquito. But it does require you're talking to the neighbors. Talking to the neighbors is something kit. Gauges good at and she gets the concept. It's not enough that I have three traps in my yard. I have to make sure that Lisa next door and Bobby on the other side and Tricia across the street that they have perhaps to it's going to take a while to get the scientific data that show the traps are working anecdotally kit gauge says this year, she's getting far fewer bytes than last"