Presentation Title

Effects of TTX on the movement, metamorphosis, and mortality of mosquito larvae

Faculty Mentor

Lee B. Kats

Start Date

23-11-2019 8:00 AM

End Date

23-11-2019 8:45 AM

Location

89

Session

poster 1

Type of Presentation

Poster

Subject Area

biological_agricultural_sciences

Abstract

Mosquitoes are a known vector for disease. Because of this, understanding mosquito behavior is essential in behavioral ecology. Some of these behaviors include movement, metamorphosis, and viability. Mosquito larvae are found in the freshwater streams of the local Santa Monica Mountains; in which the California newt, T. torosa, a known predator of mosquito larvae, are also found. Previous research has found that the neurotoxin, TTX, that the newt releases, slows down invasive New Zealand mud snail movement. No previous research, however, has looked at the effect of TTX on mosquito larvae movement. Movement is essential for mosquito larvae because it is their means for foraging and evasion. Conversely, this study determined the effect of TTX on mosquito larvae movement, metamorphosis, and mortality. We placed five mosquito larvae in ten individual shoebox containers for three different treatments: carbon filtered water, newt water, and standardized-TTX solution. During the trials, we measured the distance traveled and morphology of each mosquito larvae. At the end of the trials, we measured mortality in each container. We found no significant difference in movement across the different treatments; however, we found a significant difference in pupation and mortality levels across the different treatments. The results suggest that mosquito larvae pupate more successfully, and survivorship increases in newt-water and standardized-TTX solution. In this study, TTX may serve as a stressor for developing mosquito larvae causing them to speed development. Future studies should examine the implications of the accelerated development of adult mosquito behavior and survival.

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Nov 23rd, 8:00 AM Nov 23rd, 8:45 AM

Effects of TTX on the movement, metamorphosis, and mortality of mosquito larvae

89

Mosquitoes are a known vector for disease. Because of this, understanding mosquito behavior is essential in behavioral ecology. Some of these behaviors include movement, metamorphosis, and viability. Mosquito larvae are found in the freshwater streams of the local Santa Monica Mountains; in which the California newt, T. torosa, a known predator of mosquito larvae, are also found. Previous research has found that the neurotoxin, TTX, that the newt releases, slows down invasive New Zealand mud snail movement. No previous research, however, has looked at the effect of TTX on mosquito larvae movement. Movement is essential for mosquito larvae because it is their means for foraging and evasion. Conversely, this study determined the effect of TTX on mosquito larvae movement, metamorphosis, and mortality. We placed five mosquito larvae in ten individual shoebox containers for three different treatments: carbon filtered water, newt water, and standardized-TTX solution. During the trials, we measured the distance traveled and morphology of each mosquito larvae. At the end of the trials, we measured mortality in each container. We found no significant difference in movement across the different treatments; however, we found a significant difference in pupation and mortality levels across the different treatments. The results suggest that mosquito larvae pupate more successfully, and survivorship increases in newt-water and standardized-TTX solution. In this study, TTX may serve as a stressor for developing mosquito larvae causing them to speed development. Future studies should examine the implications of the accelerated development of adult mosquito behavior and survival.