Anopheles minimus Theobald (=An. minimus A) and possibly Anopheles harrisoni Harbach & Manguin (=An. minimus C) are important malaria vector species in the Minimus Complex in Southeast Asia. The distributions of these species are poorly known, although detailed information could benefit malaria vector incrimination and control. We used published collection records of these species and environmental geospatial data to construct consensus ecological niche models (ENM) of each species’ potential geographic distribution. The status of the Indian taxon An. fluviatilis S as a species distinct from An. harrisoni has been debated in the literature, so we tested for differentiation in ecological niche characteristics. The predicted potential distribution of An. minimus is more southerly than that of An. harrisoni: Southeast Asia is predicted to be more suitable for An. minimus, and China and India are predicted more suitable for An. harrisoni, so An. harrisoni seems to dominate under cooler conditions. The distribution of An. minimus is more continuous than that of An. harrisoni: disjunction in the potential distribution of the latter is suggested between India and Southeast Asia. Anopheles fluviatilis S occurrences are predicted within the An. harrisoni ecological potential, so we do not document ecological differentiation that might reject conspecificity. Overall, model predictions offer a synthetic view of the distribution of this species complex across the landscapes of southern and eastern Asia.
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Vol. 45 • No. 5