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Daily observations of potential mosquito developmental habitats in a suburb of Kumasi in central Ghana reveal a strong variability in their water persistence times, which ranged between 11 and 81 days. The persistence of the ponds was strongly tied with rainfall, location and size of the puddles. A simple power-law relationship is found to fit the relationship between the average pond depth and area well. A prognostic water balance model is derived that describes the temporal evolution of the pond area and depth, incorporating the power-law geometrical relation. Pond area increases in response to rainfall, while evaporation and infiltration act as sink terms. Based on a range of evaluation metrics, the prognostic model is judged to provide a good representation of the pond coverage evolution at most sites. Finally, we demonstrate that the prognostic equation can be generalised and equally applied to a grid-cell to derive a fractional pond coverage, and thus can be implemented in spatially distributed models for relevant vector- borne diseases such as malaria.
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