The effect of dairy pond water quality on mosquito biology was studied under laboratory conditions during 2004. Due to high turbidity and larval toxicity of raw water samples from dairy ponds with no mosquito breeding, water samples from both mosquito breeding and non-breeding ponds were filtered and diluted 5X with distilled water prior to being tested for sublethal effects on mosquito development. The diluted pond waters showed no significant deleterious effects on the overall development of Culex quiquefasciatus Say at 23.9° and 26.6° C. However, the 3rd and 4th instar larvae were significantly shorter and lighter in weight when reared in diluted water samples from mosquito non-breeding ponds. Similar effects were found on the developmental stages of Cx. tarsalis Coquillette. Data on water quality parameters of filtered pond waters showed higher levels of hexavalent chromium (4X), nitrites (10X), nitrates (2X), sulfates (5X), and salinity (2X) in water samples from non-breeding ponds. Based on these data, the presence of high levels of hexavalent chromium and sulfate appear to be responsible for the absence of mosquito breeding in some dairy ponds.
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