Skip to main content

Selection of biting sites on man by two malaria mosquito species

Abstract

While searching for blood, female mosquitoes pass through a behavioural process involving responses to visual, physical and chemical properties of the host. Temperature and humidity are thought to dominate mosquito orientation near the host. We observed that biting of two malaria mosquito species, i.e.Anopheles atroparvus (van Thiel) andAnopheles gambiae s.s. (Giles) preferentially occurs on different body regions of a naked motionless human host. Their preference for the head and foot regions respectively correlated with particular combinations of skin temperature and eccrine sweat gland density. Subsequent modification of the host's odour profile by removing exhaled breath and washing feet results in significant changes of these preferences.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

References

  1. 1

    Gillies, M. T., Bull. ent. Res.70 (1980) 525.

    Google Scholar 

  2. 2

    Hocking, B., A. Rev. Ent.16 (1971) 1.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  3. 3

    Wright, R. H., and Kellogg, F. E., Nature194 (1962) 402.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  4. 4

    Clements, A. N., The Physiology of Mosquitoes. Pergamon Press, Oxford 1963.

    Google Scholar 

  5. 5

    Laarman, J. J., Acta leidensia25 (1955) 1.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  6. 6

    Gillies, M. T., and Wilkes, T. J., Bull. ent. Res.61 (1972) 389.

    Google Scholar 

  7. 7

    Friend, W. F., and Smith, J. J. B., A. Rev. Ent.22 (1977) 309.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  8. 8

    Burgess, L., Nature184 (1959) 1968.

    Google Scholar 

  9. 9

    Khan, A. A., Maibach, H. I., Strauss, W. G., and Fisher, J. L. Nature223 (1969) 859.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  10. 10

    Thornton, C., Doré, C. J., and Willson, J. O. C., Bull. ent. Res.66 (1976) 651.

    Google Scholar 

  11. 11

    Rahm, U., Acta trop.13 (1956) 319.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  12. 12

    Freyvogel, T. A., Acta trop.18 (1961) 201.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  13. 13

    Haddow, A. J., Bull. ent. Res.36 (1946) 33.

    Google Scholar 

  14. 14

    Haddow, A. J., Bull. ent. Res.46 (1956) 761.

    Google Scholar 

  15. 15

    Self, L. S., Abdulcader, M. H. M., and Tun, M. M., Bull. Wld Hlth Org.40 (1969) 324.

    Google Scholar 

  16. 16

    Swellengrebel, N. H., and De Buck, A., Malaria in the Netherlands. Scheltema and Holkema Ltd., Amsterdam 1938.

    Google Scholar 

  17. 17

    White, G. B., Trans. R. Soc. trop. Med.68 (1974) 278.

    Article  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  18. 18

    Garrett-Jones, C., Boreham, P. F. L., and Pant, C. P., Bull. ent. Res.70 (1980) 165.

    Google Scholar 

  19. 19

    Clarke, R. P., and Edholm, O. G., Man and his Thermal Environment. Edward Arnold 1985.

  20. 20

    Sokal, R. R., and Rohlf, F. J., Biometry. W. H. Freeman and Co., New York 1981.

    Google Scholar 

  21. 21

    Marples, M. J., Scient. Am.220 (1969) 108.

    Google Scholar 

  22. 22

    Lewis, H. E., Foster, A. R., Mullan, B. J., Cox, R. N., and Clark, R. P., Lanceti (1969) 1273.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  23. 23

    Clark, R. P., and Toy, N., J. Physiol.244 (1975) 283.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  24. 24

    Peterson, D. G., and Brown, A. W. A., Bull. ent. Res.42 (1952) 535.

    Google Scholar 

  25. 25

    Thiel van, P. H., and Weurman, C., Acta trop.4 (1947) 1.

    Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Affiliations

Authors

Corresponding author

Correspondence to R. De Jong.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

De Jong, R., Knols, B.G.J. Selection of biting sites on man by two malaria mosquito species. Experientia 51, 80–84 (1995). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF01964925

Download citation

Key words

  • Host-seeking
  • Anopheles gambiae
  • Anopheles atroparvus
  • chemotaxis
  • behaviour