Weather is important determinant of mosquito abundance that, in turn, influences vectorborne disease dynamics. In temperate regions, transmission generally is seasonal as mosquito abundance and behavior varies with temperature, precipitation, and other meteorological factors. We investigated how such factors affected species-specific mosquito abundance patterns in Saginaw County, MI, during a 17-yr period. Systematic sampling was undertaken at 22 trapping sites from May to September, during 1989–2005, for 19,228 trap-nights and 300,770 mosquitoes in total. Aedes vexans (Meigen), Culex pipiens L. and Culex restuans Theobald, the most abundant species, were analyzed. Weather data included local daily maximum temperature, minimum temperature, total precipitation, and average relative humidity. In addition to standard statistical methods, cross-correlation mapping was used to evaluate temporal associations with various lag periods between weather variables and species-specific mosquito abundances. Overall, the average number of mosquitoes was 4.90 per trap-night for Ae. vexans, 2.12 for Cx. pipiens, and 1.23 for Cx. restuans. Statistical analysis of the considerable temporal variability in species-specific abundances indicated that precipitation and relative humidity 1 wk prior were significantly positively associated with Ae. vexans, whereas elevated maximum temperature had a negative effect during summer. Cx. pipiens abundance was positively influenced by the preceding minimum temperature in the early season but negatively associated with precipitation during summer and with maximum temperature in July and August. Cx. restuans showed the least weather association, with only relative humidity 2–24 d prior being linked positively during late spring—early summer. The recently developed analytical method applied in this study could enhance our understanding of the influences of weather variability on mosquito population dynamics.
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Vol. 49 • No. 4