Entomological surveys in urban areas are often biased by selecting houses or locations with known high vector densities. A sampling strategy was developed for Puntarenas, Costa Rica, using high-resolution satellite imagery. Grids from the Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer and a QuickBird classified land cover map were used to determine the optimal final grid area for surveys. A random sample (10% of cells) was selected, and sample suitability was assessed by comparing the mean percentage of tree cover between sample and total cells. Sample cells were used to obtain entomological data from 581 locations: 26.3% of all locations positive for mosquito larvae were not households, they contained 29.5% of mosquito-positive habitats and 16% of Aedes aegypti pupae collected. Entomological indices for Ae. aegypti (pupae per person, Breteau index, container index, location index) were slightly lower when only household data were analyzed. High-resolution satellite imagery and geographical information systems appear useful for evaluating urban sites and randomly selecting locations for accurate entomological surveys.
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