Journal Article Effect of water depth on predation frequency by diving beetles on mosquito larvae prey

Ohba, Shin-ya  ,  Ushio, Masayuki

18 ( 4 )  , pp.519 - 522 , 2015-10 , 日本昆虫学会
Diving behavior and its frequency may differ among species of mosquito larvae because of differences in predation pressure. The present study aimed to investigate the relationship between water depth and predation frequency on two mosquito species, Culex tritaeniorhynchus (wetland breeder) and Aedes albopictus (container breeder), by the diving beetle Eretes griseus. Culex tritaeniorhynchus spends more time at the surface than A. albopictus, which spends more time thrashing underwater. When intact mosquito larvae of both species were present, the diving beetles consumed almost all A. albopictus larvae (98.3%). After all the A. albopictus larvae had been consumed, the diving beetles began to prey on C. tritaeniorhynchus. In order to compare the effect of position on the predation preference of the diving beetles, equal numbers of both species were heat-killed and allowed to settle on the bottom of the container. When all the dead mosquito larvae had sunk to the bottom of a plastic container, the diving beetles caught both mosquito species at random. These results indicate that mosquito larvae near the surface were eaten less frequently by diving beetles than those at the bottom. The low diving frequency of C.tritaeniorhynchus is regarded as a form of anti-predatory behavior.

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