NASA launches app to map mosquitoes

Updated: Jun. 29, 2017 at 4:07 PM CDT
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(Source: NASA)
(Source: NASA)

(KFVS) - Most people would agree that mosquitoes are annoying, but they also spread deadly diseases.

So, NASA has launched an app in hopes of helping us understand and reduce mosquito-borne diseases.

The Mosquito Habitat Mapper is part of NASA's GLOBE Observer app. It's available for iPhone and Android.

It guides users through the process of both identifying and eliminating mosquito breeding sites. It also takes things a step further and teaches 'citizen scientists' to identify the mosquito species to determine whether it could transmit Zika, dengue fever, yellow fever, chikungunya, and other diseases.

"Satellites don't see mosquitoes," says Assaf Anyamba, a scientist using satellite data to study mosquitoes at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland. "However, satellites provide us observation platforms from which to monitor the environmental variables that indicate where mosquito populations can flourish. This helps us identify areas where disease can emerge."

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