Urban ecology of Triatoma infestans in Argentina. Association between Triatoma infestans and pigeon cotes
Vallvé, S.L.; Rojo, H.; Wisnivesky-Colli, C.
Revista de Saude Publica 29(3): 192-198
A study was undertaken in an urban area of the capital city of the province of San Juan, Argentina, in a housing complex of 768 flats distributed in buildings of 3 and 7 floors each surrounding an abandoned central winery. A total of 329 Triatoma infestans were captured, 293 on 4 terraces of seven-floor-towers and 36 inside the winery, associated with the greater number of pigeons which nest in those places. The bugs were sheltered in the dung accumulated between the cement blocks used to floor the terraces and inside the unused tuns in the winery. Two main bug foci were identified associated with the dense pigeon colonies: 81.5% of the T. infestans collected were found in one of the towers (4B) and 11% in the central winery. After six months of insecticidal spraying of the infested areas, those terraces in which T. infestans has not been previously found resulted gave positive results. The feeding profile of triatomines shows a predominance of simple bird blood meals; in the buildings and the winery 95% of the T. infestans analyzed were identified for bird blood meals; the rest had fed on one or more sources: human, dogs or cats. None of the T. infestans was infected by T. cruzi.