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Insects 2017, 8(4), 111; doi:10.3390/insects8040111

Asymmetrical Competition between Aedes aegypti and Culex quinquefasciatus (Diptera: Culicidae) Coexisting in Breeding Sites

1
Centro de Investigaciones Microbiológicas (CIMIC), Departamento de Ciencias Biológicas, Universidad de los Andes, Carrera 1 No. 18A-10, Bogotá J-206, Colombia
2
Centro de Investigaciones en Microbiología y Parasitología Tropical (CIMPAT), Departamento de Ciencias Biológicas, Universidad de los Andes, Carrera 1 No. 18A-10, Bogotá A-103, Colombia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Walter J. Tabachnick
Received: 6 September 2017 / Revised: 11 October 2017 / Accepted: 11 October 2017 / Published: 24 October 2017
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Abstract

Aedes aegypti and Culex quinquefasciatus are mosquito vectors for several tropical diseases that represent a current public health problem. The ecological requirements for each species are different, however, both species show high biological adaptability, which promotes their coexistence in the same breeding sites. The purpose of this study was to assess the effect of larval association between Ae. aegypti and Cx. quinquefasciatus under different laboratory conditions of food supply and temperature, and under field simulated conditions like peridomestic containers. Our findings showed that under field simulated conditions there was no asymmetrical competition in mixed cultures with the different Cx. quinquefasciatus/Ae. aegypti ratios tested. However, under laboratory conditions in which different doses of food supply were evaluated, it was observed that competition between the two species takes place. Larval coexistence under food scarcity conditions (0.95 mg/larva) showed that Ae. aegypti had a greater adult emergence than Cx. quinquefasciatus and was capable of depriving Cx. quinquefasciatus of the food needed to complete metamorphosis. In an intermediate dose of food (1.9 mg/larva), the dry weight of Cx. quinquefasciatus adults decreased, and their larval development time increased when Cx. quinquefasciatus/Ae. aegypti ratio was low. Also, a temperature effect was assessed demonstrating that Cx. quinquefasciatus was more vulnerable to changes in temperature. We suggest that Ae. aegypti is more successful in exploiting microhabitats when food is scarce, due to its scrape active feeding habitats and fast larval development times. Therefore, in conditions of food paucity both species will compete, and Ae. aegypti larvae will prevail. View Full-Text
Keywords: Aedes aegypti; Culex quinquefasciatus; interspecific competition; breeding places; vector ecology; larval association Aedes aegypti; Culex quinquefasciatus; interspecific competition; breeding places; vector ecology; larval association
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Santana-Martínez, J.C.; Molina, J.; Dussán, J. Asymmetrical Competition between Aedes aegypti and Culex quinquefasciatus (Diptera: Culicidae) Coexisting in Breeding Sites. Insects 2017, 8, 111.

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