We determined the species diversity, blood-feeding behavior, and host preference of Anopheles mosquitoes in two malaria endemic areas of Tak (Mae Sot District) and Mae Hong Son (Sop Moei District) Provinces, located along the Thai border with Myanmar, during a consecutive two-year period. Anopheline mosquitoes were collected using indoor and outdoor human-landing captures and outdoor cow-baited collections. Mosquitoes were initially identified using morphological characters, followed by the appropriate multiplex AS-PCR assay for the identification of sibling species within Anopheles (Cellia) complexes and groups present. Real-time PCR was performed for parasite-specific detection in mosquitoes (Plasmodium spp. and Wuchereria bancrofti). A total of 7,129 Anopheles females were captured, 3,939 from Mae Sot and 3,190 from Sop Moei, with 58.6% and 37% of all anophelines identified as An. minimus, respectively. All three malaria vector complexes were detected in both areas. One species within the Minimus Complex (An. minimus) was present along with two related species in the Funestus Group, (An. aconitus, An. varuna), two species within the Dirus Complex (An. dirus, An. baimaii), and four species within the Maculatus Group (An. maculatus, An. sawadwongporni, An. pseudowillmori, and An. dravidicus). The trophic behavior of An. minimus, An. dirus, An. baimaii, An. maculatus, and An. sawadwongporni are described herein. The highest An. minimus densities were detected from February through April of both years. One specimen of An. minimus from Mae Sot was found positive for Plasmodium vivax.
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Vol. 39 • No. 2