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Culex hortensis Ficalbi 1889  
Culex hortensis.
   
 

Distribution: Culex hortensis is a more thermophilic species and distributed throughout Europe, except for the Scandinavian and Baltic countries (Mohrig 1969, Schaffner et al. 2001). It is frequently found in the Mediterranean region (Becker et al. 2003).

Habitat: Larvae are encountered in fresh, sunny and stagnant waters, including rock pools, cement drinking troughs, puddles in a torrent bed, pond sides, drain pipes, rice fields, wells, flooded meadows or marshes (Trpiš 1962, Mohrig 1969, Briegel 1973, Schaffner et al. 2001, Becker et al. 2003). The breeding sites may be free of vegetation or overgrown with plants; a clear preference has been reported for artificial low-altitude breeding sites and for natural mountain sunny sites (Schaffner et al. 2001).

Biology: Culex hortensis is multivoltine (Schaffner et al. 2001). Larval stages are found from mid-summer to autumn and disappear at the first frosts; hibernation takes place in the adult stage: females overwinter in natural caves, cellars and ruins (Trpiš 1962, Mohrig 1969, Schaffner et al. 2001)

Adults: According to Schaffner et al. (2001) females do not bite humans or other mammals; they feed on batrachians and reptiles; Culex hortensis has never been involved in the transmission of parasitic diseases to humans.