A global assembly of adult female mosquito mark-release-recapture data to inform the control of mosquito-borne pathogens

C.A. Guerra, R.C. Reiner Jr, T.A. Perkins, S.W. Lindsay, J.T. Midega, O.J. Brady, C.M. Barker, W.K. Reisen, L.C. Harrington, W. Takken, U. Kitron, A.L. Lloyd, S.I. Hay, T.W. Scott, D.L. Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

60 Citations (Scopus)


Background Pathogen transmission by mosquitos is known to be highly sensitive to mosquito bionomic parameters. Mosquito mark-release-recapture (MMRR) experiments are a standard method for estimating such parameters including dispersal, population size and density, survival, blood feeding frequency and blood meal host preferences. Methods We assembled a comprehensive database describing adult female MMRR experiments. Bibliographic searches were used to build a digital library of MMRR studies and selected data describing the reported outcomes were extracted. Results The resulting database contained 774 unique adult female MMRR experiments involving 58 vector mosquito species from the three main genera of importance to human health: Aedes, Anopheles and Culex. Crude examination of these data revealed patterns associated with geography as well as mosquito genus, consistent with bionomics varying by species-specific life history and ecological context. Recapture success varied considerably and was significantly different amongst genera, with 8, 4 and 1% of adult females recaptured for Aedes, Anopheles and Culex species, respectively. A large proportion of experiments (59%) investigated dispersal and survival and many allowed disaggregation of the release and recapture data. Geographic coverage was limited to just 143 localities around the world. Conclusions This MMRR database is a substantial contribution to the compilation of global data that can be used to better inform basic research and public health interventions, to identify and fill knowledge gaps and to enrich theory and evidence-based ecological and epidemiological studies of mosquito vectors, pathogen transmission and disease prevention. The database revealed limited geographic coverage and a relative scarcity of information for vector species of substantial public health relevance. It represents, however, a wealth of entomological information not previously compiled and of particular interest for mosquito-borne pathogen transmission models.
Original languageEnglish
Article number276
Number of pages15
JournalParasites & Vectors
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • dominant anopheles vectors
  • plasmodium-falciparum transmission
  • distribution maps
  • bionomic precis
  • human malaria
  • sensitivity-analysis
  • population-dynamics
  • mathematical-model
  • aedes-aegypti
  • culicidae

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