In Reunion Island, the distribution of the domestic form of Aedes aegypti (L.) has been restricted to natural habitats, in ravines located on the driest west coast over the past 50 yr. It is mainly found in rock holes, where it principally co-occurs with Aedes albopictus (Skuse), the most common Aedes species and the major vector of arboviruses there. To document and understand the changes in Ae. aegypti distribution on the island since the beginning of the 20th century, data on its distribution from 1985 to 1986 and from 2007 to 2008 were analyzed and compared with previously published reports. The results show that the number of breeding sites with Ae. aegypti and the relative abundance of this species have progressively decreased and that this species is not found anymore in artificial containers. The causes of the decrease of Ae. aegypti populations are discussed. It is suggested that ecological factors such as a competitive interactions between Ae. aegypti and Ae. albopictus might have triggered the decrease of Ae. aegypti observed during the fifties and that vector control campaigns during these years might have accelerated this process.
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Vol. 46 • No. 6