The Environmental Health team led by Associate Professors Jacques Oosthuizen and Peter Neville, Dr Kim Clark and Kerry Staples have conducted a number of projects in the Perth area assessing breeding habitat and cycles of various disease vector mosquitos.
Ross River virus and dengue virus infection is the most commonly reported vector borne diseases in Australia. Recent projects have focussed on the dynamics of mosquito populations in roadside stormwater gully systems, and the presence of larval habitats in urban backyards. This research has helped inform effective mosquito control program development by local authorities.
Current research is focused on the depletion of egg banks in tidal flood plains which will inform the responsible and effective use of chemical control in environmentally sensitive habitats.
There is an urgent need to develop cost effective and environmentally responsible mosquito control measures, particularly with increased mobility of populations between Australia and Asia.
Mosquito vectors of Ross River virus; factors influencing egg survival, hatching rates, and disease transmission in tidal environments of Southwest Western Australia.
Ross River virus is the most commonly reported vector-borne disease in Australia. Due to the differing spatial, vector, environmental and host factors, predication of Ross River virus epidemics can be difficult. This project aims to study the dynamics of the vector egg bank and how spatial, environmental and climate variations impact on vector emergence and recolonisation rates, and hence patterns of disease outbreak. The efficacy of interventions (application of chemical treatments) at differing larval stages will also be assessed. This new data will be used to create a mathematical models including host, environmental and entomological factors to assist in prediction of epidemics and simulate the impact of differing control regimes on the vector population.
Project partners include local government councils and the Western Australian Department of Health.
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