Extension of habitat of female blood-sucking mosquitoes in Solomenskiy district, Kiev
AbstractFrom the epidemiological viewpoint the greatest threat to human health is represented by female mosquitoes in the hematophagous stage. Contact with these bloodsucking insects occurs most frequently in their places of diurnal concentration. The main daytime habitats of mosquitoes in urban areas are recreational areas, especially near water – forests, parks, botanical gardens, cemeteries, green zones in residential areas, residential buildings and buildings with livestock, basements and cellars. In the context of global warming and extreme high summer temperatures a tendency has been observed for mosquitoes to make increasing use of residential premises and outbuildings as a daytime habitat. In the Solomianskyi district of Kiev a six-year monitoring programme of mosquitoes’ diurnal habitat distribution was conducted. It showed that the majority of female mosquitoes which attacked humans (60%) were concentrated in areas of recreation and outdoors in residential areas. Simultaneously a significant number of mosquitoes was found to use as their daytime habitat places where they were in close proximity to humans – in domestic outbuildings (sheds under various uses), basements and cellars. The lion’s share of these mosquitoes was represented by Anopheles maculipennis (25%) and Culex pipiens (7,6%). At the same time a significant number of representatives of the genera Ochlerotatus (O. cantans, O. sticticus, O. cataphylla) and Aedes (Ae. v. vexans) were also recorded using residential premises as their daytime habitat on a scale which had not been previously observed for these species of mosquito. It is possible that female mosquitoes fly into livestock buildings at twilight because they are attracted by electric light and ammonia vapors. However, these factors are almost absent in basements and cellars. It remains to be noted that mosquitoes use basements and cellars as a daytime habitat at periods of hightemperatures and low humidity in the city. To test this assumption the distribution of mosquitoes was analysed during the warm season in 2010 in Solomyanskyi district with measurement of temperature at the locations of collection. It turned out that the air temperature in the sheds was 2–4 °C lower than outside in the shade, in the basements lower by 4–11 °C, and in the cellars lower by 4–12 °C. Comparison of the temperature in the daytime habitats and number of mosquitoes found there showed a direct relation between the outdoor temperature and the number of mosquitoes in the daytime habitat on the premises. The data indicate that there is a tendency for the number of synanthropic blood-sucking mosquito species to increase owing to the occupation of domestic premises as a daytime habitat by those species of mosquitoes for which this phenomenon was not typical earlier. If global warming and the current trend to increase in summer temperatures persist, this can cause a deterioration of the epidemiological situation in the megalopolis.
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