290 Mosquito Species Recorded in Cambodia

Until 2020, 290 mosquito species equal to 20 genera have been recorded in Cambodia, in which 49 species are newly listed and 43 species are identified as vector of pathogens (Maquart et al., 2020), said the Ministry of Environment on April 18.

According to the source, Mosquito is an insect group with wings that elongated mouthparts are used to bite and suck (Khmer Dictionary 1967). Normally, female mosquitoes feed on blood of people and animals for existence and reproduction while the male ones eat only nectar. Mosquitoes are insects classified in the family Culicidae and more than 3,600 species of small flies currently are recorded in the world.

Based on the medical studies, more than 17 percent of total communicable diseases are caused by insects and kill approximately 1,000,000 people annually and the pathogen-caused insects are introduced to everywhere in the world by means of such human activities as transportation, tourism etc. Among the pathogen-caused insects, three genera of mosquitoes are more active in disease transmission; namely, Aedes is vector of dengue fever, Chikungunya, ZIKA; Anopheles is vector of human malaria; and Culex serves as vector of Yellow fever and Japanese Encephalitis and those three genera, moreover, transmit Elephantiasis.

For instance, the dengue fever caused by Aedes aegypti is most notable disease in Cambodia after its pandemic occurred in 1995 and more than 400 people were killed. The malaria caused by four mosquito species of Anopheles minimus, A. dirus, A. maculatus, and A. aconitus has seen lower within the last two decades but the disease re-occurred in 2017.

It is noted that a study on mosquito in Phnom Penh, which was conducted for the whole period of 2020 by a researcher from the Centre for Biodiversity Conservation of Royal University of Phnom Penh in cooperation with the Pasteur Institute of Cambodia discovered 10 species; with the most specimens abundance of Aedes; i.e. about 87 percent of the total specimens collected while the least amount of Toxorhynchites splendens (Khin in prep).

The Toxorhynchites splendens is indicated as a biocontrol agent against other mosquito species as its larvae is the predator to other species larvae and more notably this species does not vector diseases (Nyamah, 2011).

Source: Agency Kampuchea Press