Adults of this genus are found primarily in temporary rain pools, swamps, and ponds. They feed readily on humans. Certain species of this genus serve as the primary vector of malaria.
This genus has but one species, Cq. perturbans. This species is extremely aggressive and feeds primarily on large mammals. It is very common throughout all of Florida and is found in very large numbers, with emergences occurring in early spring and late fall. This species also is suspected of being a bridge vector for Eastern Equine Encephalitis (transmitting the virus from the bird to a human or horse).
The larvae of Cq. perturbans are closely associated with aquatic plants such as cattails, water lettuce, and water hyacinth. The larvae pierce the roots of these plants to obtain oxygen. This species will often fly great distances in search of blood meals.
Species of this genus are found breeding in freshwater habitats such as pools, ditches, ponds, and even in effluents of sewage treatment plants. Species in this genus are considered to be of medical importance in that they have been proven to be the primary vector of St. Louis Encephalitis and also play an active role in the transmission of West Nile Virus. They are most active at dusk, but are known to be active daytime biters.
This genus is the primary vector for Eastern Equine Encephalitis. This species does not feed on humans; therefore, it cannot transmit the virus to humans. It feeds actively on birds, cycling the virus from bird to bird. They are most often found in wooded swamps and in crypts left by the roots of fallen trees.
This genus is similar to Coquillittidia, in that it is very aggressive and feeds primarily on larger mammals. It is most active at sunset. Like Coquillittidia, Mansonia larvae are associated with aquatic plants, including water lettuce, water hyacinth, and cattails, using an attenuated siphon to attach to roots to obtain oxygen. Mansonia will often fly great distances in search of blood meals. Adults of this genus are unlikely to be of medical importance.
Once an individual genus, Aedes has now been divided into 2 different genera. Species of these genera are found in temporary floodwater pools, fresh and brackish marshes, and in natural and artificial containers. Adults are abundant and bite readily outdoors at all hours of the day. It is not uncommon for them to enter homes to feed on humans. Certain species are medically important in the transmission of yellow fever and dengue.
This genus is considered to be extremely aggressive. Most of the species are known to feed on larger mammals, including humans, and are known to travel long distances in search of blood meals. Species of this genus breed primarily in temporary floodwaters, such as woodland pools, roadside ditches, and pastures. Some of the largest species of mosquitoes in Florida come from this genus. Psorophora are not known to be vectors of any common diseases in Florida. They are primarily active in early evening but are known to bite during the day in shady areas.
Species of this genus are most commonly found in ground pools, swamps, and grassy edges of lakes. They feed primarily on reptiles and amphibians, and are not known to bite humans. They are readily caught in light traps. Adults of this genus are unlikely to be of medical importance.
This genus is closely associated with bromeliads and pitcher plants. The adults lay their eggs in the bromeliads, where the larvae develop. Adults are not known to travel far from the bromeliad habitats. They are not a common vector, nor are they an aggressive species, unless humans travel into an area that has bromeliads.
Public Health Pest Control: Applicator training manual. 2001. FL DACS, Bureau of Entomology. Jacksonville, Fl.
The Other Three Genera
Members of this species breed almost exclusively in tree holes or rot cavities, occasionally in artificial containers. Adults inhabit forests and appear to be active only after dark. The feeding habits of females are largely unknown, but birds appear to be the primary hosts. None of the species of Orthopodomyia are of medical or economic importance to humans.
Known as the “crab hole” mosquito, members of this species use the upper portions of land crab burrows as daytime resting sites as well as larval development sites. They seldom annoy humans with their blood feeding activity, and Florida’s crab hole mosquito has not been implicated in the transmission of any human pathogen.
Members of this species breed primarily in tree holes or artificial containers. Unlike all other mosquitoes, the female does not take a blood meal for egg production. The long, curved proboscis is for nectar feeding only. Therefore, they are not a nuisance or have any medical impacts on human populations; however, in the larval stage, they are known to be predacious on other mosquito and aquatic insect larvae.