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Is aging raw cattle urine efficient for sampling Anopheles arabiensis Patton?

Aneth M Mahande1, Beda J Mwang'onde2, Shandala Msangi2, Epiphania Kimaro2, Ladslaus L Mnyone34, Humphrey D Mazigo5, Michael J Mahande6 and Eliningaya J Kweka2*

Author Affiliations

1 Tropical Pesticides Research Institute, Mabogini Field Station, Moshi, Tanzania

2 Tropical Pesticides Research Institute, Division of Livestock and Human Disease vector control, Mosquito Section, P.O. Box 3024, Arusha, Tanzania

3 Pest Management Centre, Sokoine University of Agriculture, P.O. Box 3110, Morogoro, Tanzania

4 Laboratory of Entomology, Wageningen University & Research Centre, P.O. Box 8031, 6700 EH, Wageningen, The Netherlands

5 Department of Medical Parasitology and Entomology, Weill-Bugando University College of Health Sciences, P.O. Box 1464, Mwanza, Tanzania

6 KCM College of Tumaini University, P.O. Box 2240, Moshi, Tanzania

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BMC Infectious Diseases 2010, 10:172  doi:10.1186/1471-2334-10-172

Published: 15 June 2010



To ensure sustainable routine surveillance of mosquito vectors, simple, effective and ethically acceptable tools are required. As a part of that, we evaluated the efficiency of resting boxes baited with fresh and aging cattle urine for indoor and outdoor sampling of An. arabiensis in the lower Moshi rice irrigation schemes.


A cattle urine treatment and re-treatment schedule was used, including a box with a piece of cloth re-treated with urine daily, and once after 3 and 7 day. Resting box with piece of black cloth not treated with urine was used as a control. Each treatment was made in pair for indoor and outdoor sampling. A 4 by 4 Latin square design was used to achieve equal rotation of each of the four treatments across the experimental houses. Sampling was done over a period of 6 months, once per week.


A total of 7871 mosquitoes were collected throughout the study period. 49.8% of the mosquitoes were collected from resting box treated with urine daily; 21.6% and 20.0% were from boxes treated 3 and 7 days respectively. Only 8.6% were from untreated resting box (control). The proportion collected indoors was ~2 folds greater than the outdoor. Of all mosquitoes, 12.3% were unfed, 4.1% full fed, 34.2% semi-gravid and 49.4% gravid.


Fresh and decaying cattle urine odour baited resting boxes offer an alternative tool for sampling particularly semi-gravid and gravid An. arabiensis. Evaluation in low density seasons of An. arabiensis in different ecological settings remains necessary. This sampling method may be standardized for replacing human landing catch.