The influence of host number on the attraction of biting midges, Culicoides spp., to light traps

Authors

  • A. GARCIA-SAENZ,

    1. Departament de Sanitat i d’Anatomia Animals, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain
    2. Liverpool University Climate and Infectious Diseases of Animals Group (LUCINDA), Department of Veterinary Clinical Science, University of Liverpool, Neston, U.K.
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  • P. McCARTER,

    1. Liverpool University Climate and Infectious Diseases of Animals Group (LUCINDA), Department of Veterinary Clinical Science, University of Liverpool, Neston, U.K.
    2. School of Veterinary Science, University of Liverpool, Neston, U.K.
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  • M. BAYLIS

    Corresponding author
    1. Liverpool University Climate and Infectious Diseases of Animals Group (LUCINDA), Department of Veterinary Clinical Science, University of Liverpool, Neston, U.K.
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Matthew Baylis, Veterinary Clinical Science, Leahurst Campus, University of Liverpool, Neston, Cheshire CH64 7TE, U.K. Tel.: +44 151 794 6084; Fax: +44 151 794 6028; E-mail: matthew.baylis@liv.ac.uk

Abstract

A preliminary study was undertaken to investigate how the number of sheep below a light-suction trap affects the number of female Culicoides obsoletus Meigen (Diptera: Ceratopogonidae) caught. As the number of sheep increased from zero to three, the number of midges caught increased, but there appeared to be no further increase when six sheep were used. The lack of increase between three and six sheep is attributable to different activity rates on certain nights, perhaps in response to weather, and suggests, therefore, that catches in light traps increase linearly with sheep numbers, at least for small host numbers.

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