J13.5 Aedes aegypti Global Suitability Maps Using a Water Container Energy Balance Model for Dengue Risk Applications

Tuesday, 12 January 2016: 4:30 PM
Room 228/229 ( New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center)
Daniel F. Steinhoff, NCAR, Boulder, CO

Dengue infections are estimated to total nearly 400 million per year worldwide, with both the geographic range and the magnitude of infections having increased in the past 50 years. The primary dengue vector mosquito Aedes aegypti is closely associated with humans. It lives exclusively in urban and semi-urban areas, preferentially bites humans, and spends its developmental stages in artificial water containers. Climate regulates the development of Ae. aegypti immature mosquitoes in artificial containers. Potential containers for Ae. aegypti immature development include, but are not limited to, small sundry items (e.g., bottles, cans, plastic containers), buckets, tires, barrels, tanks, and cisterns. Successful development of immature mosquitoes from eggs to larvae, pupae, and eventually adults is largely dependent on the availability of water and the thermal properties of the water in the containers.

Recent work has shown that physics-based approaches toward modeling container water properties are promising for resolving the complexities of container water dynamics and the effects on immature mosquito development. An energy balance container model developed by the author, termed the Water Height And Temperature in Container Habitats Energy Model (WHATCH'EM), solves for water temperature and height for user-specified containers with readily available weather data. Here we use WHATCH'EM with NASA Earth Science products used as input to construct global suitability maps based on established water temperature ranges for immature Ae. aegypti mosquitoes. A proxy for dengue risk is provided from habitat suitability, but also population estimates, as Ae. aegypti is closely associated with human activity. Gridded population data is used to mask out rural areas with low dengue risk. Suitability maps are illustrated for a variety of containers (size, material, color) and shading scenarios.

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