Classification of immature mosquito species according to characteristics of the larval habitat in the subtropical province of Chaco, Argentina|
Stein, Marina; Ludueña-Almeida, Francisco; Willener, Juana Alicia & Almirón, Walter Ricardo
To classify mosquito species based on common features of their habitats, samples were obtained fortnightly between June 2001-October 2003 in the subtropical province of Chaco, Argentina. Data on the type of larval habitat, nature of the habitat (artificial or natural), size, depth, location related to sunlight, distance to the neighbouring houses, type of substrate, organic material, vegetation and algae type and their presence were collected. Data on the permanence, temperature, pH, turbidity, colour, odour and movement of the larval habitat's water were also collected. From the cluster analysis, three groups of species associated by their degree of habitat similarity were obtained and are listed below. Group 1 consisted of Aedes aegypti. Group 2 consisted of Culex imitator, Culex davisi, Wyeomyia muehlensi and Toxorhynchites haemorrhoidalis separatus. Within group 3, two subgroups are distinguished: A (Psorophora ferox, Psorophora cyanescens, Psorophora varinervis, Psorophora confinnis, Psorophora cingulata, Ochlerotatus hastatus-oligopistus, Ochlerotatus serratus, Ochlerotatus scapularis, Culex intrincatus, Culex quinquefasciatus, Culex pilosus, Ochlerotatus albifasciatus, Culex bidens) and B (Culex maxi, Culex eduardoi, Culex chidesteri, Uranotaenia lowii, Uranotaenia pulcherrima, Anopheles neomaculipalpus, Anopheles triannulatus, Anopheles albitarsis, Uranotaenia apicalis, Mansonia humeralis and Aedeomyia squamipennis). Principal component analysis indicates that the size of the larval habitats and the presence of aquatic vegetation are the main characteristics that explain the variation among different species. In contrast, water permanence is second in importance. Water temperature, pH and the type of larval habitat are less important in explaining the clustering of species.
Culicidae, larval habitats, subtropical, Chaco, Argentina