Comparing Aedes vigilax Eggshell Densities in Saltmarsh and Mangrove Systems with Implications for Management
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Aedes vigilax (Skuse), a nuisance and disease vector, is prolific in intertidal wetlands in Australia. Aedine mosquitoes oviposit directly onto substrate. The eggshells are relatively stable spatially and temporally, providing an estimate of mosquito larval production. The aims of the research were to compare, at a general level, oviposition in mangroves and saltmarshes, and to compare oviposition between different habitats within mangroves and saltmarshes. The results indicated that there were no significant differences between production in mangrove and saltmarsh overall. However, within each system there were significant differences between habitat classes, with mangrove hummocks being the most productive. All classes, except for fringing mangrove forests, produced sufficient densities of eggshells (>0.05/cc) to warrant concern. While mosquito production in mangroves is known, the significantly higher production rates in the mangrove hummock habitats had not been demonstrated. This warrants improved management strategies that both specifically target these parts of mangrove systems and, secondly, addresses the longer-term potential for mangrove hummock habitats developing in the future; such as, in response to sea level rise and mangrove encroachment into saltmarsh. A strategy to increase tidal flushing within the systems would improve water quality and mitigate adverse impacts while providing a source reduction outcome.
Copyright 2014 by the authors; licensee MDPI, author. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported (CC BY 3.0) License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Ecological Applications not elsewhere classified