The ecological features and geographic distribution of Anopheles beklemishevi have not been studied extensively. These studies are important in connection with the validity of the ‘Anopheles lewisi’ taxon. The materials were collected in Russia and Kazakhstan from 1973 to 2012, and species identity was defined by cytogenetic analysis of polytene chromosomes of larvae and adult females. A total of 7,896 specimens from 34 geographic locations was included in the analysis. It was established that An. beklemishevi is distributed from the east coast of the Baltic Sea to the basin of the Lena River, and from the forest-tundra zone to the Altai and Sayan Mountain systems. This species is exophilic and is confined to high and/or swampy terrains found in the zone of conifer and mixed forests. The frequency of An. beklemishevi in the southwestern area, where it is sympatric with An. messeae s.l., has significantly decreased over the past decades. The results of the study indirectly suggest that An. beklemishevi does not play a significant role as a vector of malaria. It is highly improbable that An. beklemishevi and An. lewisi are the same species. Changes in the proportions of the species of the Maculipennis complex, as well as a shift of their ranges, will significantly impact the epidemiology of malaria over large areas of northern Eurasia.
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Vol. 41 • No. 2