Living reference work entry
The females of approximately 70 out of 400 species of the genus Anopheles (Greek anophelos = harmful, useless), 5–8 mm in size, serve as vectors of the malaria parasites. These so-called fever mosquitoes, who prefer regions with high humidity and who splay their abdomens at an angle of roughly 40° from a surface in normal position (Figs. 1, 2, and 3), require the nutrients in the blood of vertebrates in order for their eggs to reach maturation. The males of this genus feed on the sap of plants and are therefore not potential vectors. Eggs, which are able to float using small lateral air chambers, are laid individually at night in batches of 70–100 on the surface of placid waters. The larvae hatch out of these and come to the surface of the water for air. Once there (unlike the Aedes and Culex genera), the larvae lie flat with their abdomens parallel to the surface of the water (Fig. 3). The larvae feed by filtering organic matter. In 1–3 weeks (depending on temperature) and after 3...
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