Freshwater ecosystems are positioned at low levels in the landscape and receive large inputs of diverse plant-based detritus, a major source of energy for consumers in aquatic ecosystems. We conducted field experiments in Urbana, IL to determine the independent and combined effects of leaves of common tree species including the northern red oak (Quercus rubraL.), sugar maple (Acer saccharum Marshall), and common hackberry (Celtis occidentalis L.) on the performance of containerdwelling mosquitoes, especially Culex restuans Theobald (Diptera: Culicidae). We tested the hypothesis that leaf species have asymmetric effects on adult mosquito production and longevity. Hackberry followed by combined leaf treatments and maple produced the greatest number of pupae, whereas oak leaves produced the fewest. Leaf treatments had no significant effects on adult female sizes but female longevity was significantly lower in oak leaf treatments compared with the other leaf treatments. These findings support the hypothesis that leaf species identity influences the performance of container-dwelling mosquitoes with potential consequences for the transmission of infectious diseases.
- bottom-up effects
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
- Insect Science