Ammonium nitrogen (NH4-N) is a significant component of municipal and agricultural wastewaters, and nitrogen reduction is an important use of constructed treatment wetlands. The effects of ammonium nitrogen enrichment on resources of larval mosquitoes, larval mosquito abundance, adult mosquito production, and the abundance of related wetland organisms were examined in 0.1-ha replicate treatment wetlands. The hypothesis of a bottom-up effect induced by ammonium addition was not supported by bacterial abundance, mean bacterial cell size, or algal biomass in the water column. There was, however, a significant negative correlation between bacterial cell length and Culex tarsalis Coquillett (Diptera: Culicidae) larval abundance 1 wk later in wetlands enriched with ammonium nitrogen. Larval mosquito (Culex spp.) abundance in southern California wetlands enriched with NH4-N (mean ≈3 mg/liter) was significantly greater than in control wetlands at ambient nitrogen levels (8.3 mg NO3-N/liter, 0.1 mg NH4-N/liter). Adult mosquito production was nine-fold greater and chironomid larvae were significantly more abundant in wetlands enriched with NH4-N than in controls but other censused taxa exhibited no significant trends. Mosquitofish, Gambusia affinis (Baird & Girard), abundance was significantly reduced in enriched wetlands, but other potential mosquito predators were not significantly affected by ammonium enrichment.
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