Efficiencies of stationary sampling tools for the tsetse fly Glossina fuscipes fuscipes in western Kenya

10 Jan 2022

Monitoring the effectiveness of tsetse fly control interventions that aim to reduce transmission of African trypanosomiasis requires highly efficient sampling tools that can catch flies at low densities. The sticky small target (StS-target) has previously been shown to be more effective in sampling Glossina fuscipes fuscipes compared to the biconical trap. However, its efficiency in terms of the proportion of flies it catches out of those that visit it has not been reported. Furthermore, there are no reports on whether tsetse samples caught using the StS-target can be used for subsequent processes such as molecular tests. In this study, we evaluated the efficiency of the biconical trap and targets for sampling G. f. fuscipes. All targets were tiny (0.25 × 0.50 m) but varied in their capture system. We used targets with sticky surface (StS-targets) and those with an electrified surface (ES-targets). We also assessed the suitability of flies caught on the StS-target for molecular tests by amplifying DNA of bacterial communities. Randomized block design experiments were undertaken in Mbita area and Manga Island on Lake Victoria of western Kenya. Fly catches of each sampling tool were compared to those of the sampling tool flanked by electric (E) nets and analyzed using a negative binomial regression. The total catch for each sampling tool alone was divided by the total catch of the sampling tool flanked by two E-nets to obtain its efficiency expressed as a percentage. A proportion of flies caught on the StS-target was preserved for molecular tests. Overall, the efficiencies of the biconical trap, ES-target and StS-target were 7.7%, 13.3% and 27.0%, respectively. A higher proportion of females (69 to 79%) than males approached all the sampling tools, but the trap efficiency was greater for male G. f. fuscipes than females. Furthermore, sequencing the 16S rRNA gene from fly samples caught on the StS-target revealed the presence of Spiroplasma. Our results indicate that the SS-target is the most efficient trap to monitor G. f. fuscipes population during interventions, with the biconical trap being the least efficient, and samples collected from StS-targets are suitable for molecular studies.