Bio-Control of Anopheles Mosquito Larvae Using Invertebrate Predators to Support Human Health Programs in Ethiopia.


Eba K(1)(2), Duchateau L(1), Olkeba BK(2)(3)(4), Boets P(3)(5), Bedada D(6), Goethals PLM(3), Mereta ST(2), Yewhalaw D(7)(8).
Author information:
(1)Biometrics Research Centre, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Ghent University, 9820 Merelbeke, Belgium.
(2)Department of Environmental Health Science and Technology, Jimma University, Jimma 378, Ethiopia.
(3)Department of Animal Sciences and Aquatic Ecology, Ghent University, Coupure Links 653, Building F, 9000 Ghent, Belgium.
(4)Department of Environmental Health Science, Hawassa University, Hawassa 1560, Ethiopia.
(5)Provincial Centre of Environmental Research, Godshuizenlaan 95, 9000 Ghent, Belgium.
(6)Department of Statistics, Jimma University, Jimma 378, Ethiopia.
(7)School of Medical Laboratory Sciences, Jimma University, Jimma 378, Ethiopia.
(8)Tropical and Infectious Diseases Research Center, Jimma University, Jimma 378, Ethiopia.


Mosquitoes have been a nuisance and health threat to humans for centuries due to their ability to transmit different infectious diseases. Biological control methods have emerged as an alternative or complementary approach to contain vector populations in light of the current spread of insecticide resistance in mosquitoes. Thus, this study aimed to evaluate the predation efficacy of selected potential predators against Anopheles mosquito larvae. Potential invertebrate predators and Anopheles larvae were collected from natural habitats, mainly (temporary) wetlands and ponds in southwest Ethiopia and experiments were conducted under laboratory conditions. Optimal predation conditions with respect to larval instar, water volume and number of predators were determined for each of the seven studied predators. Data analyses were carried out using the Poisson regression model using one way ANOVA at the 5% significant level. The backswimmer (Notonectidae) was the most aggressive predator on Anopheles mosquito larvae with a daily mean predation of 71.5 larvae (95% CI: [65.04;78.59]). Our study shows that larval instar, water volume and number of predators have a significant effect on each predator, except for dragonflies (Libellulidae), with regard to the preference of the larval instar. A selection of mosquito predators has the potential to control Anopheles mosquito larvae, suggesting that they can be used as complementary approach in an integrated malaria vector control strategy.