Evaluation of a handmade trap for malaria mosquito surveillance by citizens, Rwanda

  • Marilyn Murindahabi (University of Rwanda) (Creator)
  • Sander Koenraadt (Contributor)



For effective sampling of mosquitoes in malaria surveillance programmes, it is essential to include attractive cues in traps. With the aim of implementing a citizen science project on malaria vectors in rural Rwanda, a handmade plastic bottle trap was designed and tested in the laboratory and in the field to determine its effectiveness in capturing adult Anopheles gambiae, the main malaria vector, and other mosquito species. Carbon dioxide (CO2) and light were used as attractive cues. CO2 was produced by inoculating sugar or molasses with yeast. Light was emitted from a torch by light-emitting diodes (LEDs). Under field conditions in rural Rwanda, three handmade trap designs were compared to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention miniature light traps (CDC-LT) in houses. In the laboratory, no significant differences between traps baited with sugar plus yeast and molasses plus yeast were observed. Adding heat to the trap reduced capture rates of malaria mosquitoes. In the field, the trap baited with yeast-sugar produced CO2 and light caught the highest number of mosquitoes compared to the traps baited with light alone or CO2 alone. The number of An. gambiae s.l. in the handmade trap with light and CO2 was about 8-10% of the number caught with a CDC light trap. This suggests that about 10 volunteers with a handmade trap could capture a similar-sized sample of An. gambiae as one CDC-LT would collect. Based on these findings, the handmade plastic bottle trap baited with sugar fermenting yeast and light represents an option for inclusion in mosquito surveillance activities in a citizen science context in rural areas.
Date made available1 Sept 2021
PublisherWageningen University
Date of data production1 Feb 2020


  • Mosquito density
  • CDC light trap
  • handmade trap

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