Malaria in Texas?

Mosquito control with a house for batsBefore DDT, malaria caused by mosquito bites was a serious problem along the Gulf states. Mosquitoes remain a very serious threat.

Today we rely only on an arsenal of biological and chemical suppression techniques – many of these increasingly ineffective, and costly.

Are there alternatives? Is there an industrial-scale green technology to control mosquitoes? Why not a Municipal Bat Roost?

In the center right of this 1914 photograph, Dr. Charles Campbell is posing on his innovative mosquito control for San Antonio, Texas, “Disguised with a church steeple complete with cross, the roost became a favorite bat habitat.”

To harvest guano, still a costly and highly valuable organic fertilizer, the roost was “fitted with a trapdoor and stilts to facilitate the harvesting of guano by the wagon load”.

Larger version at Shorpy via ecotality