Mosquitoes have been important vectors of human pathogens for thousands of years; their importance is likely to increase as global warming changes the world-wide distribution of mosquito species. Since the early 1960s, taxonomists at the Walter Reed Biosystematics Unit (WRBU), within the National Museum of Natural History, at the Smithsonian Institution, have been providing taxonomic information on the various genera and species of mosquito that transmit malaria, dengue and other pathogens.
An important role of the WRBU is to provide support for military personnel and others at the front line in mosquito identification as part of vector-borne disease prevention. To this end, the Unit has been involved for some time in developing online Lucid identification keys for various regions of the world. While some of these Lucid keys are still in development, many keys (>150) can be accessed from a dedicated Lucid Server via the WRBU website, as shown below.
To provide easier access to mosquito keys in the field, this Lucid Mobile App had been developed for malaria carrying mosquitoes found in 8 Central American countries.