Anti-dengue mosquito nets out soon in South Cotabato

GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews/15 July) – The Department of Science and Technology will roll out later this month the use of the Mosquito Ovicidal/Larvicidal (OL) trap system in several parts of South Cotabato province in a bid to help curb the incidence of the deadly dengue fever in the area.

Dr. Rogelio Aturdido Jr., South Cotabato provincial health officer, said in a radio interview on Friday that experts from the DOST are set to visit the province next week to introduce the use of the mosquito OL trap system, which had been found as an effective measure in controlling the spread of the dengue virus.

He said the DOST, in coordination with the Department of Health, will initially distribute mosquito OL trap kits and conduct trainings regarding the system in several communities in the province that have posted rising cases of dengue in the past several months.

Aturdido said their anti-dengue campaign is currently centered in the municipalities of Tupi and Polomolok and in Koronadal City, which posted the highest number of confirmed dengue cases in the province since January.

South Cotabato has recorded the highest dengue incidence in Region 12 or Southwestern Mindanao during the first half of the year with at least 246 cases.

The municipality of Polomolok recorded the most number of cases with 108 followed by Koronadal City with 55.

The mosquito OL trap system, which was developed by the DOST’s Industrial Technology Development Institute, is a simple device that helps reduce the number of the dengue-carrying female Aedes aegypti mosquito by trapping and eventually killing its eggs through Ovicidal-Larvicidal treatment.

Aturdido said the mosquito OL trap kits are composed of small tin or plastic containers that are painted in black and filled with organic solution.

He said the organic solution includes dissolved Ovicidal-Larvicidal pellets, which were intended for the treatment of the mosquito eggs.

A DOST briefer cited that a piece of wood that looks like an ice cream bar stick saturated with the solution is also placed upright in the container.

“This is where the mosquitoes will lay their eggs. The black color of the container attracts the mosquitoes and the fumes of the solution kill the eggs and larvae,” it said.

The agency added that “the OL Trap my last up to two months, outliving a generation of mosquitoes which has a lifespan of only one month. A female mosquito can lay as many as 400 eggs four times in its life, 80 percent of which will turn out to be female. But through the OL Trap, the next generation of mosquitoes in an area will certainly be wiped out.”

DOST officials earlier said the mosquito OL trap system, which was launched earlier this year, has shown favorable results in terms of controlling the population of the female Aedes aegypti based on laboratory and field tests that it had conducted.

Laboratory tests reportedly showed that the OL trap is 100 percent effective while the field tests in 500 households in Quezon City and 500 households in Marikina City showed some promise. (Allen V. Estabillo/MindaNews)