• Species composition;
  • adult mosquito traps;
  • southern France;
  • West Nile virus;
  • Culex pipiens;
  • Culex modestus


Five trapping methods were compared for monitoring potential vectors of the West Nile virus in four areas in the Camargue Plain of France: carbon dioxide traps, bird-baited traps, gravid traps, resting boxes, and human landing catches. A total of 73,721 specimens, representing 14 species, was trapped in 2006. Results showed significant differences in species and abundance between the type of traps. Many more specimens were collected using CO2 traps than any other method, with an average of 212 specimens per night per trap (p<0.05). Culex pipiens was the most abundant species collected (36.8% of total with CO2 traps), followed by Aedes caspius (22.7%), Anopheles hyrcanus (18.3%), Culex modestus (18.3%), and Aedes detritus (3.2%). Bird-baited traps captured only eight specimens per night per trap on average, mainly Cx. pipiens (89.9%). The species collected and their abundance are influenced by the trap location, at ground or canopy level. Culex pipiens was twice as abundant in the canopy as on the ground, whereas it was the opposite for Ae. caspius, An. hyrcanus, and Ae. detritus. Culex modestus was equally abundant at both levels. Resting boxes and gravid traps were much less efficient, capturing around 0.3 specimens per night per trap. Results are discussed in relation to West Nile virus surveillance.