Revista de Saúde Pública
Print version ISSN 0034-8910
FLORES-MENDOZA, Carmen; CUNHA, Rodolfo A.; ROCHA, Dayse S. and LOURENCO-DE-OLIVEIRA, Ricardo. Blood-meal sources of Anopheles aquasalis (Diptera: Culicidae) in a South-eastern State of Brazil. Rev. Saúde Pública [online]. 1996, vol.30, n.2, pp. 129-134. ISSN 0034-8910. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0034-89101996000200003.
Anopheles aquasalis has shown local variations in blood-host preference in Brazil: it seems to be anthropophilic in the northeast and zoophilic or opportunistic in the Amazon and other regions. A study was carried out in Guapimirim county, State of Rio de Janeiro, from May to November 1992, for the purpose of identifying the blood meal source of this anopheline by capillary tube precipitin test. A total of 1,366 females were captured at natural resting-places, 725 of which were blood-fed. The gut content of 473 blood fed females reacted to the antisera used (human, cow, horse, pig, dog and chicken). The majority of the females ¾ 356 (75.3%) ¾ had blood from only one source. A substantial bovine preference was observed ¾ 52.2% had fed on cows, 29.8% on horses, 10.7% on pigs, 4.5% on chickens and 1.7% on dogs, but only few had fed on man (1.1%) and none on rats. On the other hand, 24.7% of the females had fed on more than one host, mainly on cows and horses. It was assumed that An. aquasalis is zoophilic in southeastern Brazil, feeding on a wide variety of animals, the cow being the primary host.
Keywords : Anopheles; Food preferences; Ecology, vectors.