This map shows the location of the 30 ovicup mosquito surveillance traps placed in Menlo Park. These traps are used to monitor for the presence of Aedes aegypti and other invasive mosquito species.
Ovicups are traps used to detect the eggs and larvae of invasive Aedes mosquitoes, including Aedes aegypti. They consist of a small plastic cup filled with tap water and a regular wooden tongue depressor wrapped in a coffee filter. This unlikely-sounding combination of ordinary materials is irresistible to container-breeding mosquitoes like Aedes aegypti, who are lured to the ovicup to lay their eggs on the wet coffee filter.
Laboratory staff inspect the ovicups weekly for mosquito eggs and larvae, and identify them by species. Any eggs or larvae are then destroyed to prevent the emergence of adult mosquitoes.