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Studies on the feeding behaviour of larvae of the predaceous mosquito Culex (Lutzia) tigripes Grandpre and Chamoy (Diptera: Culicidae)

  • Maxwell A. Appawu (a1), Samuel K. Dadzie (a1) and Solomon Q. Quartey (a2)

Abstract

Experiments were carried out to determine the factors that influence the feeding behaviour of Culex tigripes, a mosquito whose larvae are predators of other mosquito larvae. The results indicated that the efficiency of predatory activities of Cx tigripes larvae increased as they developed from 1st to 4th instar with regard to the number of mosquito prey larvae they consumed in a given period of time. Fourth instars of Cx tigripes are the most voracious of all the stages and are better adapted for catching and consuming all stages of mosquito larvae. The mean number of mosquito larvae consumed in 24 hours increased with increasing prey density. When offered a mixture of different prey species and larval stages, Cx tigripes larvae consistently selected 4th instars of mosquitoes over pupae and preferred Aedes aegypti larvae to the larvae of Cx quinquefasciatus and Anopheles gambiae. Prey size, density and mobility were also found to influence prey selection by Cx tigripes.

Des expériences ont été effectuées pour déterminer les facteurs qui influencent le comportemerit d'alimentation des Culex tigripes, un moustique dont les larves sont des prédateurs d'autres larves de moustique. Les résultats ont montré que l'efficacité des activités prédatrices des larves de Cx tigripes augmentait pendant qu'elles évoluaient du ler au 4ème stade larvaire quand on considère le nombre de larves de moustique qu'elles ont consommées dans une période donnée. Les larves du 4ème stade de Cx tigripes sont les plus voraces de tous les stades larvaires et les mieux adaptées à la capture et à la consommation des larves autres moustiques. Le nombre moyen de larves consommées en 24 heures a augmenté avec l'acroissement de la densité des proies. Mises dans un millieu contenant un mélange de différentes espèces de proies, les larves de Cx tigripes ont montré une préférence pour les larves d'Aedes aegypti au détriment de celles de Cx quinquefasciatus et d'Anopheles gambiae. De même dans leur choix des différents stades larvaires à consommer, elles ont toujours préféré les larves du 4ème stade aux nymphes. Cette étude montre que les principaux facteurs qui influencent la sélection des proies par les larves de Cx tigripes sont la taille, l'abondance et la mobilité des proies.

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References

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Studies on the feeding behaviour of larvae of the predaceous mosquito Culex (Lutzia) tigripes Grandpre and Chamoy (Diptera: Culicidae)

  • Maxwell A. Appawu (a1), Samuel K. Dadzie (a1) and Solomon Q. Quartey (a2)

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