Aedes aegypti (L.) is the primary vector of dengue viruses, a group of four serotypic single-stranded RNA viruses. Dengue virus RNA can be readily detected in fresh or dried infected mosquitoes by using reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). The current study examined the persistence and limit of dengue virus RNA detection in infected Ae. aegypti killed and exposed to natural ambient tropical conditions of temperature and humidity. Under relatively harsh conditions, dengue RNA retained sufficient integrity to be detected in dried mosquitoes up to 13 wk after exposure to relatively high ambient temperatures (26.3-31.7 degrees C) and relative humidity (49.4-69.9%). These findings confirm that the necessity for testing either fresh or frozen mosquitoes is not a prerequisite when using RT-PCR as the viral detection method, and under particular epidemiological circumstances it allows for a more convenient means of conducting vector-virus surveillance activities where collection methods and logistics may preclude immediate testing or access to a cold chain.