Bulletin of Entomological Research

Original Articles

Visual responses of tsetse flies (Diptera: Glossinidae) to odour-baited targets

G.A Valea1 c1

a1 Regional Tsetse and Trypanosomiasis Control Programme, Harare, Zimbabwe


Field studies in Zimbabwe showed how targets 1 m tall and 25–400 cm wide, composed of vertical panels of visual material and net and baited with odours of acetone, 1-octen-3-ol, and phenols, could be refined for controlling Glossina morsitans morsitans Westwood and G. pallidipes Austen. Attraction from a distance was not affected by swivelling movement but improved several-fold as the width of visual panels increased from 25 to 200 cm. Blue or blue/black targets were about as effective as black for G. m. morsitans but slightly more effective for G. pallidipes. Fine and coarse net was unattractive at long range but the flies avoided coarse net when close. The percentage of tsetse alighting on visual panels before flying round increased up to several times when the panels were widened, and when non-shiny black replaced blue or shiny black, but the percentage of flies alighting before departure was not much affected expect by panel width, being near 0% at 25 cm and 85% at 2 m. Most tsetse alighted first near the centre of targets, especially where black contrasted with nearby blue. Studies of various fabrics and paints and of restricted deposition of insecticide suggested several disposable targets that could have the costs of materials and insecticide, with efficacy preserved for G. m. morsitans and increased by up to 50% for G. pallidipes.

(Accepted October 21 1992)


c1 Dr G.A. Vale, Regional Tsetse and Trypanosomiasis Control Programme, P.O. Box A560, Avondale, Harare, Zimbabwe