Competitors itching to win mosquito-catching contest

Wed Jun 16, 2010 11:14pm EDT
 
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TARTU, Estonia (Reuters Life!) - The mosquito population of Estonia is a little smaller after the Baltic state hosted its first mosquito-catching championship.

A total of 37 participants gathered in a field in the city of Tartu and were given 10 minutes to catch as many mosquitoes as possible in a small, designated area.

The competition rules did not state whether the collected mosquitoes had to be dead or alive and competitors could work alone or in teams of three.

"We have many mosquitoes and we must fight them somehow, so we decided to organize a mosquito-catching championship," said the event's organizer, Triinu Akkermann.

One competitor, Jevgeny Serov, had a plan worked out in the lead-up to the contest.

"We will warm up so we will start sweating a little then I will stand with bare hands and feet and my wife and daughter will pick mosquitoes off me," he told Reuters Television.

But the winner of the first prize -- a sailing trip on the Estonia's Lake Peipus -- was Rauno Luksepp who caught 38 mosquitoes but accumulated as many bites in the process.

The idea of the contest came from Finland where there have been mosquito-catching championships in the past.

(Reporting by Reuters Television)