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J Vector Ecol. 2005 Jun;30(1):155-62.

Non-larvicidal effects of Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis and Bacillus sphaericus on oviposition and adult mortality of Culex quinquefasciatus Say (Diptera: Culicidae).

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  • 1Department of Entomology, University of California, Riverside, CA 92521-0134, USA.


Two microbial mosquito larvicides, Bacillus thuringiensis ssp. israelensis (Bti) and Bacillus sphaericus (Bsph), have been shown to be highly effective in controlling mosquito larvae and have been used in larvicidal programs for many years. In exploring other modes of action of these agents, we studied the ovipositional response of Bsph susceptible and resistant Culex quinquefasciatus to aqueous suspensions of Bti and Bsph water dispersible granules (WDG). We quantified the level of mortality of adult mosquitoes caused by exposure to Bti and Bsph suspensions during oviposition. Significantly lower numbers of egg rafts were laid and collected from the treatments than the control regimen. There was an inverse relationship between Bacillus product concentrations and oviposition. As the concentration of Bti or Bsph increased from 0.0 to 2.0 mg/L, treated waters received progressively fewer egg rafts. In addition to the negative effects of Bacillus on oviposition, both male and female adult mosquitoes suffered high mortality on landing and imbibing on Bti and Bsph suspensions, the extent of mortality directly proportional to concentration. These two microbial agents used solely as mosquito larvicides thus have the additional benefits of reducing mosquito oviposition and killing adult mosquitoes, especially gravid females that come in contact with the treated water either for oviposition or drinking. Reducing the number of gravid females may also result in reduced transmission rates of pathogens. The combined effects of reduced oviposition and adult mortality could result in higher control potential of these microbial agents.

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