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Contribution of fish farming ponds to the production of immature Anopheles spp. in a malaria-endemic Amazonian town

, : Contribution of fish farming ponds to the production of immature Anopheles spp. in a malaria-endemic Amazonian town. Malaria Journal 14(): 452-452

In the past decade fish farming has become an important economic activity in the Occidental Brazilian Amazon, where the number of new fish farms is rapidly increasing. One of the primary concerns with this phenomenon is the contribution of fishponds to the maintenance and increase of the anopheline mosquito population, and the subsequent increase in human malaria burden. This study reports the results of a 2-year anopheline abundance survey in fishponds and natural water bodies in a malaria-endemic area in northwest Brazil. The objective of this study was to investigate the contribution of natural water bodies (rivers, streams, creeks, ponds, and puddles) and artificial fishponds as breeding sites for Anopheles spp. in Mâncio Lima, Acre and to investigate the effect of limnological and environmental variables on Anopheles spp. larval abundance. Natural water bodies and fishponds were sampled at eight different times over 2 years (early, mid and late rainy season, dry season) in the Amazonian town of Mâncio Lima, Acre. Anopheline larvae were collected with an entomological dipper, and physical, chemical and ecological characteristics of each water body were measured. Management practices of fishpond owners were ascertained with a systematic questionnaire. Fishponds were four times more infested with anopheline larvae than natural water bodies. Electrical conductivity and the distance to the nearest house were both significant inverse predictors of larval abundance in natural water bodies. The density of larvae in fishponds raised with increasing border vegetation. Fishponds owned by different farmers varied in the extent of anopheline larval infestation but ponds owned by the same individual had similar infestation patterns over time. Commercial fishponds were 1.7-times more infested with anopheline larvae compared to fishponds for family use. These results suggest that fishponds are important breeding sites for anopheline larvae, and that adequate management activities, such as removal of border vegetation could reduce the abundance of mosquito larvae, most importantly Anopheles darlingi.

PMID: 26573145

DOI: 10.1186/s12936-015-0947-1

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