René Bødker

René Bødker


René Bødker is a senior researcher in the Vector Group in Section of Animal Welfare and Disease Control.

He has 30+ years’ experience in monitoring and quantifying vector borne disease transmission (mosquitoes, biting midges, ticks and recently mechanical vectors) in African and Europe. Presently heading the Danish national vector surveillance.

Research focus is on quantifying and predicting transmission potential in time and space using primarily robust mechanistic transmission models driven by detailed environmental and meteorological data. These transmission models attempts to mimic the biological processes step by step and are built in modules e.g. the ‘biting daily rate’, ‘vector survival rate’, ‘virus development time in the vector’. Many of these transmission parameters varies with increasing ambient temperatures. We use our own microclimatic prediction models to convert data from meteorological institutes into temperatures at the vector resting sites.

Many projects focus on quantifying a specific transmission parameter in the models e.g.:

  • How many vectors are biting us, biting our pets, and biting the production animals in Denmark?
  • How long does a mosquito live?
  • How many times will a biting midge feed on a host in its lifetime?
  • Can flies move MRSA from farms to humans living close by?
  • Do biting flies introduce African Swine Fever virus to pig farms during outbreaks in wild boars?
  • How big is a TBE hot spot in Denmark?
  • What vector species spread Schmallenberg virus between ruminants in Denmark
  • Who is at risk of getting infected with neuroborreliosis in Denmark

The vector group operates a series of sentinel monitoring sites for ticks, mosquitoes and biting midges in forests, private gardens and on farms in Denmark ( The Vector group is involved in outbreak investigations in Denmark and abroad. The vector group is also involved in identifying and ranking emerging vector borne disease risks in Denmark (



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