The abundance and larval performance of Aedes phoeniciae in supralittoral rock-pools

Sahar Rosenfeld, Leon Blaustein, Jamie Kneitel, Claire Duchet, Rael Horwitz, Olga Rybak, Antonina Polevikov, Eyal Rahav

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


The mosquito Aedes phoeniciae is a potential disease vector that inhabits the coastal rock-pools of the Southeastern Mediterranean Sea. Our year-long study examined the abundance and distribution of Ae. phoeniciae in 49 rock-pools along HaBonim Beach Nature Reserve (Israeli coast) on a monthly basis (September 2016 to August 2017). Additionally, the physical, chemical, and biological characteristics of the rock-pools were measured. Our results showed a correlation between the abundance of Ae. phoeniciae and abiotic (salinity, pool volume, and pH) and biotic (bacterial, micro-phytoplankton, and chironomid abundance) characteristics. A complementary experiment was conducted to examine the role of bacteria and phytoplankton on Ae. phoeniciae larval performance by rearing larvae in seawater (SW) or seawater without microbes (FSW, 0.2-µm). Ae. phoeniciae grown in SW exhibited a high survivorship rate (~ 77%), while lower survivorship rate was measured in the FSW treatments (~ 45%). Furthermore, a higher number of adult females were found in the SW compared to FSW treatments (35 and 11, respectively), while the number of male adults remained similar. Our results suggest that Ae. phoeniciae larvae rely on the water characteristics and especially on the microbial communities that habitat the rock-pools. These results may enable improved mosquito control of Ae. phoeniciae along the Southeastern Mediterranean Sea.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)181-192
Number of pages12
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2019
Externally publishedYes

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© 2019, Springer Nature Switzerland AG.


  • Aedes mariae complex
  • Coastal rock-pools
  • Israeli coast
  • Supralittoral rock-pools


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