Houston Arboretum and Nature Center

Harris County Precinct 4’s Biological Control Initiative partnered with the Houston Arboretum and Nature Center throughout 2021 to apply control agents to help reduce mosquito breeding in the park.

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Check out the BCI team in action at Houston Arboretum & Nature Center’s Willow Oak Pond, sampling mosquito larvae to inspect for biocontrol agent infection.

Meet the Agents: 

Culex Destroyer Nematodes: Microscopic worm that parasitizes mosquito larvae and kills them before they grow into biting adults.

  • Monthly applications at Willow Oak Pond, flooded meadows, and shaded depressions near boardwalks.
  • Each application contained 1mL adult worms and one million eggs.
  • Weekly follow-up surveys at the Willow Oak Pond to investigate the establishment of a mermithid population.

Mosquito Assassins: Insect that preys on mosquito larvae.

  • Released more than 815 adult mosquito assassins near the nature center.
Predacious Copepods: Microscopic crustacean that preys on mosquito larvae.
Carnivorous Bladderwort: Aquatic plant that traps mosquito larvae in their underwater traps.