Ochlerotatus spp

From Dog
A female unfed Ochlerotatus[1]

Ochlerotatus spp are a genus of mosquitoes which feed habitually on dogs worldwide[2].

Species which are pathogenic to dogs include:

  • Ochlerotatus geniculatus[3]
  • Ochlerotatus taeniorhynchus[4]
  • Ochlerotatus notoscriptus[5]
  • Ochlerotatus fulvus[6]
  • Ochlerotatus serratus
  • Ochlerotatus scapularis[7]
  • Ochlerotatus vigilax[8]

Mosquitoes lay their eggs on water or in dry places that tend to flood seasonally. The larvae molt four times within the first two weeks of hatching and then pupate. Within 24 hours after emergence from the pupa, female mosquitoes begin seeking blood, feeding every day or every second day on a host until sufficient protein stores allow them to begin laying eggs. It is the repeated feeding which makes them vectors for so many diseases and a cause of blood loss when feeding in swarms[9].

These mosquitoes are the predominant peridomestic mosquito in Australia where they are a primary vector of dog heartworm, Dirofilaria immitis, and a potentially important vector of arboviruses (Barmah Forest, Ross River, everglades virus)[3].

Preventative control of mosquito populations is the most effective method of disease control.

Drugs such as fipronil[10] and permethrin[11] are effective in long-term management strategies.


  1. Uni of Florida
  2. Johansen CA et al (2009) Determination of mosquito (Diptera: Culicidae) bloodmeal sources in Western Australia: implications for arbovirus transmission. J Med Entomol 46(5):1167-1175
  3. 3.0 3.1 Azari-Hamidian S et al (2009) Distribution and ecology of mosquitoes in a focus of dirofilariasis in northwestern Iran, with the first finding of filarial larvae in naturally infected local mosquitoes. Med Vet Entomol 23(2):111-121
  4. Manrique-Saide P et al (2008) Ochlerotatus taeniorhynchus: a probable vector of Dirofilaria immitis in coastal areas of Yucatan, Mexico. J Med Entomol 45(1):169-171
  5. Foley DH et al (2004) Population structure of the peridomestic mosquito Ochlerotatus notoscriptus in Australia. Med Vet Entomol 18(2):180-190
  6. Jones JW et al (2004) Seasonal distribution, biology, and human attraction patterns of culicine mosquitoes (Diptera: Culicidae) in a forest near Puerto Almendras, Iquitos, Peru. J Med Entomol 41(3):349-360
  7. Gomes AC et al (2003) Host-feeding patterns of potential human disease vectors in the Paraíba Valley region, State of Säo Paulo, Brazil. J Vector Ecol 28(1):74-78
  8. Boyd AM & Kay BH (2002) Assessment of the potential of dogs and cats as urban reservoirs of Ross River and Barmah Forest viruses. Aust Vet J 80(1-2):83-86
  9. Bowman, DD (2009) Georgis' parasitology for veterinarians. 9th edn. Elsevier Saunders, Missouri. pp:7
  10. Bouhsira E et al (2009) Efficacy of fipronil-(S)-methoprene, metaflumizone combined with amitraz, and pyriprole commercial spot-on products in preventing Culex pipiens pipiens from feeding on dogs. Vet Rec 165(5):135-137
  11. Machida H et al (2008) The inhibitory effect of a combination of imidacloprid and permethrin on blood feeding by mosquitoes in dogs raised under outdoor conditions. Vet Parasitol 154(3-4):318-324