The host source and human blood index (HBI) of an exophilic population of the “forest” cytoform of Anopheles gambiae Giles sensu stricto, from a peri-urban area of the island of São Tomé, were assessed. Blood meals of 434 An. gambiae females from all-night indoor light-trap collections, 193 from indoor and 422 from outdoor resting collections, were determined by ELISA. Significant differences were found in the HBI estimates from insects collected indoors (0.93) and outdoors (0.27). Blood-fed insects collected resting outdoors provided the most representative sample for host determination. Dogs were the predominant hosts, followed by humans and pigs. Of all human feeds, it was estimated that 81.5% were taken inside houses. The low HBI of 0.27 for the An. gambiae population explains the low sporozoite rate and the meso-endemicity of malaria in the island.
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Vol. 38 • No. 1