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Comparative studies on sibling species of the Anopheles gambiae Giles complex (Dipt., Culicidae): bionomics and vectorial activity of species A and species B at Segera, Tanzania*

  • G. B. White (a1), S. A. Magayuka (a2) and P. F. L. Boreham (a3)
  • DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0007485300047738
  • Published online: 01 July 2009
Abstract

Collections of Anopheles gambiae Giles complex, A. funestus Giles group and other mosquitoes were made by spray-catch from twelve catching stations indoors and by hand-catch from pit shelters at two catching stations at Segera, Tanzania, between January 1970 and June 1971. Females of A. gambiae were identified cytotaxonomically as sibling species A or B of the complex. In houses during 1970, A. gambiae species B was more numerous at first than A, but A became predominant during the long rains of March-May. In the cool dry weather of June-November both A and B densities declined and the A:B ratio surpassed 50:1. The short rains in December produced a population explosion of species B and less multiplication of species A, the B:A ratio reaching >11:1. In 1971, hot dry weather during January-March caused declines of species A and B with a maximum B: A ratio of 13:1. Long rains, coming in late March, provoked a resurgence of A and a concurrent decline of B, so that the A:B ratio again reached 20:1 in June. Similar cycles of species A and B were observed outdoors, although the relative numbers outdoors/indoors averaged 2·3 times more for species B than for species A. In A. funestus, A. gambiae species A and A. gambiae species B Human Blood Indices were 97·5%, 91·2% and 60·9% indoors and 24%, 2% and 7% outdoors, respectively. Respective malaria sporozoite rates were 1·62%, 4·23% and 0·32% and minimum rates of stage-Ill filarial infection were 0·33%, 0·44% and 0·57%. Sporozoite-positive and sporozoite-negative mosquitoes exhibited similar HBF's in species A and discrepant HBI's in species B. The HBI's were higher in filariapositive A and B females than in filaria-negative females. Gregarines occurred in 1·36% of species A and 0·38% of species B. Trematode cysts were seen in two specimens of species A.

Of A and B females 28% and 4%, respectively, had four-banded palps. It is shown mathematically that the discrepant malaria sporozoite rates in species A and B may be explained by extrapolating from the man-biting rate and probable daily survival rate for each species. This implies that no unrecognised factors play a major role in causing the contrasting efficiency of these two sibling species as malaria vectors.

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G. B. White (1971 a). Studies on transmission of Bancroftian filariasis in north-eastern Tanzania.—Trans. R. Soc. trop. Med. Hyg. 65, 819829.

G. B. White (1971b). Chromosomal evidence for natural inter-specific hybridization by mosquitoes of the Anopheles gambiae complex.—Nature, Lond. 231, 184185.

G. B. White (1972). The Anopheles gambiae complex and malaria transmission around Kisumu. Kenya.—Trans. R. Soc. trop. Med. Hyg. 66, 572581.

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