Holarctic species is widely distributed from Northern and Central
Europe to Siberia and less frequent in the southern countries; in
the Mediterranean region it seems to be replaced by Cs. litorea
(Cranston et al. 1987, Schaffner et al. 2001).
stages are encountered in fresh or more rarely in slightly brackish
waters, including pools, wells, backwaters, small ponds or ditches,
overgrown with vegetation, and peat bogs; they mostly inhabit temporary
waters, either open to the sun or heavily shaded and often rich
in detritus (Mohrig 1969, Briegel 1973, Rettich et al. 1978, Cranston
et al. 1987, Schaffner et al. 2001, Becker et al. 2003). Moreover
Marshall (1938) notes a single record of larvae found in a tree
hole, associated with Anopheles plumbeus and Ochlerotatus
species is univoltine, eggs are laid individually in dry hollows
littered with dead vegetation or on banks of drying pools; larvae
hatch in autumn or in winter, when their breeding sites are flooded,
and overwinter in the larval stage (Marshall 1938, Mohrig 1969,
Schaffner et al. 2001). They are present from autumn throughout
winter and spring. During the winter months larvae often descend
to the bottom of the breeding site, where they lie in an inverted
position with their head setae and tip of the siphon in contact
with the ground; they are able to survive under coverage of ice,
but entire freezing of the water body leads to a high mortality
(Becker et al. 2003).
emerge from the end of April until June and disappear in late summer
or autumn (Service 1968a, Mohrig 1969, Schaffner et al. 2001).
seem to feed essentially on birds and are not aggressive to mammals
and humans (Mohrig 1969, Schaffner et al. 2001, Becker et al. 2003);
however Service (1968a) notes that they rarely may chose reptilian
or mammalian blood, including that of man. Cs. morsitans
may be infected by the Sindbis virus (Ockelbo); according to its
trophic preferences the risk of parasitic transmission to humans
is insignificant (Schaffner et al. 2001).