Billboard that lures mosquitoes to their death unveiled in Zika fight

A billboard that attracts and kills mosquitoes has been unveiled and its design is being made freely available, as its creators believe it could help in the fight against the mosquito-borne Zika virus.

The Mosquito Killer Billboard, created by marketing agencies Posterscope and NBS in Brazil, emits a solution containing carbon dioxide and lactic acid, which mimics human breathing and sweat, to lure mosquitoes from as far away as four kilometres.

Once the insects are trapped in the panel, they eventually die of dehydration.
Two of the boards have been placed in Rio de Janeiro, as Brazil battles a Zika epidemic.

The inventors have released the blueprint and they’re encouraging people around the world to make them.
“It’s impressive how many mosquitoes you can trap and how many lives you can save with this idea,” Posterscope’s Otto Frossard told the BBC.

Although he told the BBC that “anything that can be done to reduce the prevalence of the mosquito is a good thing”, Dr Chris Jackson, a pest control expert at the University of Southampton issued a word of caution

He said while the science behind the billboard was effective, attracting the insects to areas where there are really humans could cause a problem.

“Maybe if it was not in a high-density place, where people are sitting perhaps with exposed legs… otherwise, you’re pulling in hungry mosquitoes and providing them with exposed human flesh,” he told the BBC.

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