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1 July 2005 Mosquito (Diptera: Culicidae) Development within Microhabitats of an Iowa Wetland
David R. Mercer, Sara L. Sheeley, Edward J. Brown
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Although they provide a number of valuable ecological services, wetlands also may harbor mosquitoes that are vectors of human pathogens. During 2002 and 2003, we measured biological (i.e., abundances of mosquitoes, other insects, and total heterotrophic bacteria, vegetational cover, and dead organic material), chemical (i.e., pH, dissolved nitrate, dissolved nitrite, dissolved phosphate, total alkalinity, and electrical conductivity), and physical (i.e., water temperature, dissolved oxygen, depth, and turbidity) attributes at fixed survey sites in Beaver Valley Wetlands, a small reconstructed palustrine wetland in Black Hawk County, Iowa. The number of immature mosquitoes was significantly correlated with dissolved nitrate and dissolved phosphate concentrations in both years. During the second year of the study, the number of immature mosquitoes was significantly correlated with nonpredators and water turbidity, but not with other measured variables. Independent variables explained 87 and 70% of the variability in mosquito numbers per survey site for the 2 yr of the study, respectively. The most common species of mosquitoes developing in Beaver Valley Wetlands were Aedes vexans (Meigen) Culex territans Walker, Uranotaenia sapphirina (Osten Sacken), and Culex tarsalis Coquillet. We compared relative risks of disease transmission by the mosquitoes developing in wetland microhabitats based upon published species-specific infection rates and propensities to bite humans. The majority of mosquitoes and the greatest potential disease risks were associated with temporary pools, which represented a small proportion of the wetlands. Although relatively few mosquitoes developed in Beaver Valley Wetlands, targeted control efforts could dramatically reduce the numbers of mosquitoes produced with minimal impacts upon nontarget species.

David R. Mercer, Sara L. Sheeley, and Edward J. Brown "Mosquito (Diptera: Culicidae) Development within Microhabitats of an Iowa Wetland," Journal of Medical Entomology 42(4), 685-693, (1 July 2005).[0685:MDCDWM]2.0.CO;2
Received: 30 May 2004; Accepted: 17 February 2005; Published: 1 July 2005

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mosquito larval development
palustrine wetland
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