Aedes sollicitans (Walker), known as the saltmarsh mosquito, which now has a new name in Miami Florida Ochlerotatus sollicitans is a major pest species along the Atlantic and Gulf coasts of the United States and Canada. In addition to being a nuisance, it is an important vector of eastern equine encephalitis, Venezuelan equine encephalitis, and Dirofiliaria immitis and the West Nile virus. The larvae of Aedes sollicitans are found in salt marshes along the coast and in brackish water in some inland states. The larvae are found all year in the southern portions of the US like Florida.
Now related to Ochlerotatus taeniorhynchus Ochlerotatus tormentor, Ochlerotatus triseriatus, formally known as Aedes taeniorhynchus, Aedes tormentor, Aedes triseriatus. Indeed in Florida, only Aedes aegypti, Aedes albopictus, Aedes vexans and Aedes cinereus, will remain as Aedes.
It also has an alternate name Culex sollicitans
Flying Distances of Aedes sollicitans
Females are very strong fliers, sporadically found 100 miles from the nearest known larval habitat.
Females are tenacious and will bite any time, day or night, when their resting places are invaded.
Aedes sollicitans is a crepuscular species with most host-seeking flights taking place at twilight
Like virtually all female mosquitoes requiring a bloodmeal to produce an egg batch, and they obtain blood from birds and mammals the multiple host-feeding preference makes it a role for Aedes sollicitans as a bridge vector for many mosquito-borne diseases.
Life Stages or Cycle
Aedes sollicitans mosquitoe have 4 life stages: egg, larva, pupa and adult.
They may have as many as 12 broods in one season.
The reproductive potential is astounding, one female is capable of producing 250,000 mosquitoes in just 2 generations.
Adults are most abundant in the summer and by the beginning of fall, eggs laid by these females are in a diapause will overwinter. Since the eggs are desiccant resistant, the egg remain viable for up to five years.
Aedes sollicitas has what is has Multivoltine Life Cycle it is a multivoltine species. In the fall, egg hatch diminishes with the reduction in light and temperature. What eggs remain enter a dormancy stage known as a true diapause, for the duration of the winter. http://www.nmca.org/PAPER17.htm
Eggs are desiccation-resistant which are laid on a substrate that are periodically flooded by lunar tides the larvae develop in salt marsh pools and have multiple generations each year the mosquito eggs overwinters.
Aedes sollicitans is most abundant between the months of May through October.
Although they are often called salt marsh mosquitoes Aedes sollicitans rarely breed directly on tidal marshes.
The greatest abundance are in areas adjacent to salt marshes in brackish water where fresh water from the upland drains on to coastal habitats.
They are capable of breeding in freshwater habitats.
They reach their greatest concentration sin areas close to the coast.
The eggs are deposited directly on standing water.
A female can deposit as many as 200 eggs after a blood meal.
The eggs must dry for 24 hours before they are viable.
Development will depend on environmental conditions, which are slower during the cooler temperatures of spring and fall.
Female Aedes sollicitans lay their eggs individually on a wet substrate at the upper reaches of grassy salt marshes.
Supplementary habitats include dredge spoil sites and brackish water swamps.
The larvae develop in pools that result from high tides and/or heavy rainfall.
These aquatic systems tend to dry more quickly than other mosquito habitats, and survival to the adult stage often depends on rapid larval development.
The northeast Gulf of Mexico shoreline contains about 60% of the coastal and freshwater marshes in the US, northern Florida alone has 400,000 to 500,000 acres of salt marsh which ranges from the Apalachicola Bay south to Tampa Bay where salt marshes are the main costal community.
Adult Aedes sollicitans can emerge in as little as 4 to 5 d after egg hatch under optimal conditions.
Development of the larvae and pupae to adult stages requires 7 – 10 days in warm weather.
Complete development from egg to adult generally varies from about 7 to 16 days.
It can up to 3 weeks in the larval stage depending on the temperature.
Aedes sollicitans has 2 types of flights feeding or mating, and emigration. In communities’ occurrences of Aedes sollicitans occurs when mosquitos have flights in search for food or mates.
Emigration flights will involve millions of individual mosquitoes reaching 24–55 miles, the brood can travel long distances into residential communities before returning to the coastal areas depending on wind direction and speed of prevailing winds and the age of the mosquitoes.
Under advantageous environmental conditions, female mosquito can fly about 1 mile per day; but, after depositing eggs (oviposition), most female mosquitoes will remain at salt marshes.
High rains induce Ae. sollicitans egg hatching, but they may reduce appetential flights.
As temperatures rise result larvae develop faster and an increase in adult mosquitoes seeking a host or blood meal.
Bitting typically occurs during the twilight periods of dusk and dawn, but, resting females will bite during the day if they are disturbed.
Control of Aedes sollicitans
Innland control can be dificult since they do not tend to bread nearby like aedes agypti so traditional methods of misting and spraying with traditional pyrethroids and insect growth regulators can be futile.
Using products like ATSB Attractant Sugar Baits or Attractant Toxic Sugar Baits with natural toxicants like garlic can prove to be more effective at controlling adult mosquitoes.