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Larval habitats and biodiversity of anopheline mosquitoes (Diptera: Culicidae) in a malarious area of southern Iran

Author(s): A.A. Hanafi-Bojd , H. Vatandoost , M.A. Oshaghi , Z. Charrahy , A.A. Hagdoost , M.M. Sedaghat , F. Abedi , M. Soltani & A. Raeisi

Journal: Journal of Vector Borne Diseases
ISSN 0972-9062

Volume: 49;
Issue: 2;
Start page: 91;
Date: 2012;
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Keywords: Anopheles | ecology | Iran | larval habitats

Background & objectives: Malaria is the most important mosquito-borne disease in Iran. It is endemic in southto southeastern part of the country. Knowledge about bio-ecology of vectors will support authorities for appropriatemanagement of the disease. Bashagard district is one of the main endemic areas for malaria in south of Iran.This study was conducted to determine anopheline fauna, diversity and affinity in the area, characterization oflarval habitats, and mapping their potential distribution across the district.Methods: The potential aquatic habitats for Anopheles larvae were extracted from Indian Remote Sensing Satellite(IRS) image and digital elevation model of the area using GIS. Surface water bodies were sampled monthlyduring 2009–10 for anopheline larvae, while characteristics of their physical environment were recorded andwater samples were analyzed.Results: A total of 4511 Anopheles larvae were found during the year with the lowest and highest frequencies inFebruary and April, respectively. Dominant species was Anopheles culicifacies. The Shanon diversity indexranged from 0.570–0.829 at fixed collection sites, while the affinity index was significant among some vectorspecies.Conclusion: Riversides and riverbeds were the main breeding places which provided sandy, rocky, and claybeds for different species. The potential breeding places as well as distribution of collected species were mapped.Knowledge about ecology of malaria vectors provides information to health sector for effective control programs.

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