Morphologic Variations of Larvae of the Scutellaris Group of Aedes (Diptera, Culicidae) in Polynesia

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  • Institut de Recherches Médicales de l'Océanie Française (Pacific Tropic Diseases Project), Department of Parasitology, School of Hygiene and Public Health, Johns Hopkins University, Papeete, Tahiti
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The scutellaris group of Aedes (Stegomyia), which ranges from the eastern part of the Australasian Region to the eastern part of the Oriental Region, includes species which have been incriminated as important vectors of human filariasis and dengue. This complex now contains 17 species, all of which are similar morphologically. The various species are differentiated primarily by the structure of the male terminalia, although in certain species the coloration characters of the adults are of use.

Larvae of only one species, Aedes horrescens Edwards, have been considered as disinctive (Edwards, 1935). This species was originally distinguished from other members of the scutellaris group by the prominent stellate setae of the larvae, which made them appear hairy (hence the name horrescens). These hairy larvae have been found primarily in tree holes (Paine, 1943; Lever, 1944 and 1945) in contrast to most species of the scutellaris group which utilize a wide variety of small containers as breeding sites.

Author Notes

Senior Assistant Surgeon (R), National Institutes of Health, National Microbiological Institute, Laboratory of Tropical Diseases, Bethesda, Maryland.

Associate Professor of Parasitology, School of Hygiene and Public Health, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland.

We are indebted to Dr. P. F. Mattingly of the British Museum for specimens of A. horrescens; to Dr. H. S. Leeson of the London School of Tropical Medicine for specimens of A. pseudoscutellaris; to Lt. L. A. Jachowski, U.S.N., for specimens from the Samoa Islands; to Mr. Isimeli M. Rakai for specimens from the Fiji Islands; to Dr. H. K. Beye for specimens from the Tonga Islands; and to Dr. A. Stone of the U. S. National Museum for helpful advice and assistance in the course of this study.

This work was supported in part by a grant-in-aid to the Johns Hopkins University from the Division of Research Grants, National Institutes of Health, U. S. Public Health Service.