IWMI Research Report – 57

Small Irrigation Tanks as a Source of Malaria Mosquito Vectors: A Study in North-Central Sri Lanka.


Amerasinghe, F. P.; Konradsen, F.; van der Hoek, W.; Amerasinghe, P. H.; Gunawardena, J. P. W.; Fonseka, K. T.; Jayasinghe, G. 2001. Small irrigation tanks as a source of malaria mosquito vectors: a study in north-central Sri Lanka. Colombo, Sri Lanka: IWMI. v, 28p. (IWMI Research Report 57) [doi: 10.3910/2009.062]



Malaria causes human mortality, morbidity and economic loss, especially in tropical rural communities. The disease is transmitted by Anopheles mosquitoes whose larval stages breed in watery habitats such as those found in irrigation systems. Mosquitoes that transmit other diseases, as well as nuisance mosquitoes, may also breed in such habitats. A previous study in 1994 in the Upper Yan Oya watershed in the north-central dry zone of Sri Lanka indicated the high malariogenic potential of a small irrigation rese rvoir that forms part of a cascade irrigation system in the dry zone of Sri Lanka. The present work followed up on this finding, and investigated mosquito breeding in nine small irrigation reservoirs (known locally as “tanks”) in the same watershed during 1995-1997. The objectives were to determine a) whether important malaria-vector mosquitoes breed in the tanks, b) tank characteristics that may enhance mosquito breeding, and c) rehabilitation and management measures that help reduce mosquito breeding opportunities in the tanks.


ISBN 92-9090-461-5

ISSN 1026-0862