Managing biting insect nuisance

Managing biting insect nuisance

Preventing insect nuisance in wetlands, amongst others mosquitoes (Culicidae), biting midges (Ceratopogonidae) and horse flies (Tabanidae), can be facilitated by applying ecological knowledge. We develop prevention schemes and study the autoecology of biting insects.

Examples of projects


Monitoring of biting insects and developing prevention schemes

The restoration of former wetlands and the expansion of existing wetlands as well as the use of arable land in stream and river valleys to alleviate flooding is important to adapt to the impacts of climate change, to meet goals in achieving WFD water quality objectives, to provide increased wetland habitat for wildlife and an outdoor space for human ‘well-being’.

More and more, concerns are raised over the potential impacts that such initiatives might have on biting insect population development and its associated nuisance and disease risk. It is important to ensure that biodiversity gain and habitat restoration can advance without inadvertently elevating the risks from disease vectors.

Biting insect management always starts with monitoring of the species involved, followed by applying knowledge on the ecology of the respective species when developing potential measures that can be taken to reduce larval habitats. Furthermore communication to those involved is essential in successful insect nuisance prevention. The guideline ‘Leidraad Risicomanagement Overlast Steekmuggen en Knutten’ can be very helpful in this approach.

Major publications

Publications, tools, presentations