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Different responses of two floodwater mosquito species Aedes vexans and Ochlerotatus sticticus (Diptera: Culicidae) to larval habitat drying
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Biology, Department of Ecology and Evolution, Population Biology.
Biological Mosquito Control, Villagatan 4, SE-81020 Österfärnebo, Sweden .
2006 (English)In: Journal of Vector Ecology, ISSN 1081-1710, E-ISSN 1948-7134, Vol. 31, no 1, 123-128 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Insect larvae that live in temporary ponds must cope with a rapidly diminishing resource. We tested the hypothesis that floodwater mosquitoes would react to diminishing water levels by accelerating larval development time and emerging as smaller adults. Since a reduction in habitat size leads to increased larval densities, we also included two larval densities. Newly-hatched floodwater mosquito larvae, Aedes vexans (87.9% of emerged adults) and Ochlerotatus sticticus (12.0% of emerged adults), were taken from the field and randomly assigned to one of three water level schedules. Survival to adult emergence was significantly affected by the water level schedule. Ae. vexans adults emerged later in the decreasing schedule than the constant water schedule, but time to emergence was not affected by larval density. In the drying water schedule, Ae. vexans adults emerged 6 to 14 days after complete water removal. Adult size was significantly affected by both water level schedule and larval density. Adults of Oc. sticticus emerged earlier in the decreasing than the constant water schedule which was in accordance with our hypothesis, but size was not affected. Our results indicate two different responses of two floodwater mosquito species to diminishing larval habitat. Oc. sticticus accelerated larval development while Ae. vexans larvae showed remarkable survival in humid soil. Both species are often numerous in inundation areas of large rivers, and climatic conditions after a flood might influence which species dominates the adult mosquito fauna.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2006. Vol. 31, no 1, 123-128 p.
Keyword [en]
floodwater mosquito; Ochlerotatus sticticus; Aedes vexans; larval survival; survival strategy
National Category
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-92391DOI: 10.3376/1081-1710(2006)31[123:DROTFM]2.0.CO;2ISI: 000238936300017PubMedID: 16859100OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-92391DiVA: diva2:165445
Available from: 2004-11-19 Created: 2004-11-19 Last updated: 2016-08-24Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Mosquitoes as a Part of Wetland Biodiversity
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Mosquitoes as a Part of Wetland Biodiversity
2004 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Wetlands contain both aquatic and terrestrial environments which generates high biodiversity. However, they are commonly associated with mosquitoes (Diptera: Culicidae), and mosquitoes are usually regarded as negative by humans because they can cause nuisance and transmit diseases. This thesis aimed to clarify the association between mosquitoes and wetlands and to achieve a more balanced view of biodiversity in wetlands by including mosquito diversity.

Studies on adult mosquito diversity and assemblages were performed in 18 wetlands spread over Sweden. The Swedish mosquito species were organized in ten functional groups based on four life-history characteristics. This classification was used as an additional diversity measurement and as a tool for presentation of mosquito data.

Mosquito diversity showed several of the well-established diversity patterns such as a latitudinal gradient, a species-area relationship and a distribution-abundance relationship. In a landscape perspective, diversity of both mosquitoes and dytiscids (Coleoptera: Dytiscidae) were positively influenced by a high proportion of permanent water and a high amount of open areas, indicating co-varying diversity patterns.

Mosquito assemblages in the Nedre Dalälven region were mainly structured by the extent of flooded areas and wetland type (wet meadow, swamp and bog). In addition to the influence of the proportion of temporary wetlands at a local scale, the proportion of forest gained importance at larger spatial scales and in relation to dispersal distances of species. In southern Sweden, mosquito faunas differed between natural and constructed wetlands, partly reflecting differences in wetland size. In an experiment, different responses of two co-occurring mosquito species to rapid larval habitat desiccation indicate that weather conditions after a flood could influence mosquito assemblages.

The conclusions of this thesis provide suggestions on how to construct and position wetlands for increased insect diversity, and indicate that low abundance of major nuisance species might be crucial for acceptance of wetlands near human settlements.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis, 2004. 63 p.
Comprehensive Summaries of Uppsala Dissertations from the Faculty of Science and Technology, ISSN 1104-232X ; 1042
Ecology, diversity patterns, species assemblages, functional groups, constructed wetlands, dytiscids, Ekologi
National Category
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-4670 (URN)91-554-6094-1 (ISBN)
Public defence
2004-12-10, Ekmansalen, EBC, Norbyvägen 14, Uppsala, 10:00 (English)
Available from: 2004-11-19 Created: 2004-11-19 Last updated: 2009-03-31Bibliographically approved

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