Section 8
Chapter 7,866

Temperature and moisture content of soils of termite mounds and animal burrows in relation to relative abundance of adult phlebotomine sandflies diptera psychodidae in marigat semiarid area baringo district kenya

Basimike, M.; Mutinga, M.J.

Environmental Entomology 19(3): 486-489


ISSN/ISBN: 0046-225X
DOI: 10.1093/ee/19.3.486
Accession: 007865856

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In the Marigat Location, Baringo District, Kenya, Africa, a survey was conducted from November 1986 to August 1987 to study the microclimate of termite mounds and animal burrows in relation to the relative abundance of sandflies of the genera Phlebotomus and Sergentomyia. Soil temperature was the most stable parameter in both sites (CV = 4.9%), ranging from 24.0 to 31.7.degree.C in termite mounds, with a monthly average of 28.6.degree.C, and from 21.7 to 30.0.degree.C in animal burrows, with a monthly average of 25.6.degree.C. Soil moisture content showed a greater degree of variability (CV = 43.7%) with a range of 10.0-47.5% in termite mounds (monthly mean = 29.9%), while in burrows 1.0-48.5% was monitored (monthly mean = 23.8%). Adult sandflies could therefore withstand high temperatures and low moisture content. Correlations between relative abundance of sandflies and soil microclimatic factors were positive for the genus Sergentomyia, whereas for the genus Phlebotomus the coefficients were positive in animal burrows and negative in termite mounds. However, none of the coefficients of correlation was statistically significant.

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