Influence of biological and physicochemical characteristics of larval habitats on the body size of Anopheles gambiae mosquitoes (Diptera: Culicidae) along the Kenyan coast

Joseph M. Mwangangi, Charles M. Mbogo, Ephantus J. Muturi, Joseph G. Nzovu, Ephantus W. Kabiru, John I. Githure, Robert J. Novak, John C. Beier

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Background & objectives: The number and productivity of larval habitats ultimately determine the density of adult mosquitoes. The biological and physicochemical conditions at the larval habitat affect larval development hence affecting the adult body size. The influence of biological and physicochemical characteristics on the body size of Anopheles gambiae was assessed in Jaribuni village, Kilifi district along the Kenyan Coast. Methods: Ten cages measuring 1 × 1 × 1 m (1 m3) with a netting material were placed in 10 different aquatic habitats, which were positive for anopheline mosquito larvae. Emergent mosquitoes were collected daily by aspiration and the wing lengths were determined by microscopy. In the habitats, physicochemical parameters were assessed: pH, surface debris, algae and emergent plants, turbidity, substrate, nitrate, ammonia, phosphate and chlorophyll a content. Results: A total of 685 anopheline and culicine mosquitoes were collected from the emergent cages. Only female mosquitoes were considered in this study. Among the Anopheles spp, 202 were An. gambiae s.s., eight An. arabiensis, two An. funestus, whereas the Culex spp was composed of 214 Cx. quinquefasciatus, 10 Cx. tigripes, eight Cx. annulioris and one Cx. cumminsii. The mean wing length of the female An. gambiae s.s. mosquitoes was 3.02 mm (n = 157), while that of An. arabiensis was 3.09 mm (n = 9). There were no associations between the wing lengths and the environmental and chemical parameters, except for a positive correlation between wing length of An. gambiae and chlorophyll a content (r = 0.622). The day on which the mosquitoes emerged was not significant for the anopheline (p = 0.324) or culicine mosquitoes (p = 0.374), because the mosquito emerged from the cages on a daily basis. Interpretation & conclusion: In conclusion, there was variability in production of emergent mosquitoes from different habitats, which means that there should be targeted control on these habitats based on productivity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)122-127
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Vector Borne Diseases
Volume44
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2007

Keywords

  • Cage
  • Emergence
  • Mosquitoes
  • Wing lengths

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Parasitology
  • Infectious Diseases

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    Mwangangi, J. M., Mbogo, C. M., Muturi, E. J., Nzovu, J. G., Kabiru, E. W., Githure, J. I., Novak, R. J., & Beier, J. C. (2007). Influence of biological and physicochemical characteristics of larval habitats on the body size of Anopheles gambiae mosquitoes (Diptera: Culicidae) along the Kenyan coast. Journal of Vector Borne Diseases, 44(2), 122-127.