To characterize the production patterns of the dengue virus vector Aedes aegypti (L.) (Diptera: Culcidae), pupal surveys were conducted in selected neighborhoods of two major cities in Nicaragua. In León, 833 houses were visited in July and September 2003, corresponding to the beginning and middle of the dengue season; in Managua, 1,365 homes were visited in July 2003. In total, 7,607 containers were characterized, of which 11% were positive for Ae. aegypti larvae and 4% for pupae. In addition to barrels, potted plants and superficial water on tarps and in puddles were identified as highly productive sites. Univariate and multivariate analysis revealed frequency of container use, use of a lid, and rainwater filling as key variables affecting pupal positivity. Importantly, this survey demonstrated the risk associated with the presence of lids, the limited temporal efficacy of temephos, and the lack of association of water availability with risky water storage practices. Finally, we introduce the concept of an efficiency value and an accompanying graphical display system that can facilitate development of targeted pupal control strategies. These data underscore the importance of entomological surveillance of pupal productivity to gather information from which to derive streamlined, efficient, and effective vector control measures to reduce the density of Aedes mosquito larvae and pupae and thus the risk for dengue.
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Vol. 44 • No. 5