The effect of urea on the oviposition behaviour of culicine vectors of Japanese encephalitis was studied in rice fields. Gravid females had a strong preference for oviposition in urea treated areas in rice fields, while no such preference was exhibited in untreated areas. The egg laying declined in the area where urea treated water surface had a mechanical barrier, which allowed volatile fractions to escape, but prevented contact with the water. Urea was shown to act as an oviposition attractant/stimulant for Culex tritaeniorhynchus
, but its role was not clear for Cx. vishnui
, as the number of egg rafts obtained for the latter species was low.