A team of scientists led by Julia Clennon reported in this month’sInternational Journal of Health Geographics, that locating mosquito breeding grounds responsible for malaria transmission may be possible with a combination of Landsat and Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM; i.e., elevation) data.

The research team used Landsat data along with elevation data to locate mosquito larvae habitats in southern Zambia. While the research team had limited success using Landsat to separate the habitat of the malaria-carrying mosquitoes from that of non-malaria carrying mosquitoes, the number of aquatic habitats were few enough that the team concluded it would be cost-effective to take larval control measures at all of the potential habitats located with the data. The authors also concluded that the free availability of both Landsat and SRTM data meant that satellite-imagery based prediction models could be more widely used by those trying to manage malaria outbreaks.

Further Information:
International Journal of Health Geographics [external link]