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ENHANCEMENT OF DEVELOPMENT OF LARVAL ANOPHELES ARABIENSIS BY PROXIMITY TO FLOWERING MAIZE (ZEA MAYS) IN TURBID WATER AND WHEN CROWDED

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  • 1 Department of Immunology and Infectious Diseases, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts; Center for International Development, Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts

To determine whether proximity to flowering maize enhances the development of larval anopheline mosquitoes breeding in turbid water and when crowded, we evaluated the development of larval Anopheles arabiensis under various conditions of turbidity, larval density, and proximity to pollen-shedding maize in simulated breeding puddles in a malaria-endemic site. In naturally formed puddles, water turbidity, as well as larval density, increased as the rainy season progressed. In sites remote from flowering maize, more pupae developed and the resulting adults were larger in relatively clear water than in turbid water, and larval crowding inhibited development. In close proximity to flowering maize, however, larval development was little affected by water turbidity and larval crowding. Larvae of this member of the African An. gambiae complex of mosquitoes develop readily in turbid water and when crowded, provided that their breeding sites are located where maize pollen is abundant.

Author Notes

Reprint requests: Andrew Spielman, Department of Immunology and Infectious Diseases, Harvard School of Public Health, 665 Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02115.
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