The BG-Sentinel (BGS) trap uses visual and olfactory cues as well as convection currents to attract Aedes aegypti (L.). The impact of the visual environment on trapping efficacy of the BGS trap for Ae. aegypti was investigated. Four- to 5-d nulliparous female and male Ae. aegypti were released into a semicontrolled room to evaluate the effect of the presence, reflectance, and distribution of surrounding harborage sites on BGS trapping efficacy. Low-reflective (dark) harborage sites near the BGS had a negative effect on both male and nulliparous female recapture rates; however, a more pronounced effect was observed in males. The distribution (clustered versus scattered) of dark harborage sites did not significantly affect recapture rates in either sex. In a subsequent experiment, the impact of oviposition sites on the recapture rate of gravid females was investigated. Although gravid females went to the oviposition sites and deposited eggs, the efficacy of the BGS in recapturing gravid females was not compromised. Ae. aegypti sampling in the field will mostly occur in the urban environment, whereby the BGS will be among oviposition sites and dark harborage areas in the form of household items and outdoor clutter. In addition to understanding sampling biases of the BGS, estimations of the adult population size and structure can be further adjusted based on an understanding of the impact of dark harborage sites on trap captures. Outcomes from this suite of experiments provide us with important considerations for trap deployment and interpretation of Ae. aegypti samples from the BGS trap.
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Vol. 47 • No. 4