Color and height affects oviposition site preferences of Toxorhynchites splendens and Toxorhynchites rutilus rutilus Diptera Culicidae in the laboratory
Jones, C.J.; Schreiber, E.T.
Environmental Entomology 23.1: 130-135
ISSN/ISBN: 0046-225X DOI: 10.1093/ee/23.1.130
Oviposition site preferences of two predatory mosquitoes, Toxorhynchites splendens (Wiedemann) and Toxorhynchites rutilus rutilus (Coquillet), were compared in the laboratory using eight oviposition cup colors affixed 0 and 1 m from the cage floor. T. splendens females preferred to oviposit in black containers. Secondary preferences were for dark red and brown rather than green, blue, orange, yellow, or white containers. Substantial oviposition occurred in containers of all colors except white and yellow. Over 96% of all eggs were deposited at ground level. T. r. rutilus females had a stronger preference for ovipositing in black containers but did deposit eggs in red, blue, and brown containers at ground level. More than 25% of all eggs were deposited 1 m from the cage floor during choice tests. Oviposition by T. r. rutilus rarely took place in containers painted white, yellow, orange, and green. On the basis of these results, T. splendens appears to be the better candidate for mosquito control in heavily urbanized areas where discarded containers on the ground serve as developmental habitat for pest mosquitoes. T. r. rutilus appears to be the better candidate for treeholes. It is suggested that consistent means of comparing the characteristics of Toxorhynchites species for biological control programs be developed.