METHODS: Ten females derived from wild pupae were allowed to fully blood-feed on restrained mice. 774 eggs were hatched in seasoned water. F1 larvae were followed for development until their F2 counterparts emerged as adults. Some population parameters were monitored (F1) or estimated (F2).
RESULTS: A. albopictus exhibited increased fecundity and egg hatch success. Immature development was quick. Immature survival was high, with lowest rate in the pupal stage. Adult emergence was about 81% and sex ratio was close to 1:1. Generational mortality (K) was about 28%. A high proportion of females completed a reproductive cycle and the obtained parity rate was predicted to lead to higher fecundity in the next generation.
CONCLUSIONS: It can be concluded that natural A. albopictus populations in Penang seem largely determined by quick development in combination with low immature loss and increased oviposition.
METHODS: In a series of choice, no-choice, and embryo toxicity bioassays, we examined changes in the ovipositional behaviours and larval eclosion of Ae. albopictus in response to coffee extracts at different concentrations.
RESULTS: Oviposition responses were extremely low when ovicups holding highly concentrated extract (HCE) of coffee were the only oviposition sites. Gravid females retained increased numbers of mature eggs until 5 days post-blood feeding. When provided an opportunity to oviposit in cups containing coffee extracts and with water, egg deposition occurred at lower rates in those containing coffee, and HCE cups were far less attractive to females than those containing water only. Females that successfully developed in a coffee environment preferentially oviposited in such cups when in competition with preferred oviposition sites (water cups), but this trait did not continue into the fourth generation. Larval eclosion occurred at lower rates among eggs that matured in a coffee environment, especially among those that were maintained on HCE-moistened substrates.
CONCLUSIONS: The observations of the present study indicate a pronounced vulnerability of Ae. albopictus to the presence of coffee in its habitats during the early phases of its life cycle. The observations that coffee repels gravid females and inhibits larval eclosion provide novel possibilities in the search for novel oviposition deterrents and anti-larval eclosion agents against dengue vectors.
Methods: Males were fed one of two diets in this study: experimental extract of Eurycoma longifolia (MSAs) and sugar only (MSOs). Differences in life span, courtship latency, copulation activity and mating success were examined between the two groups.
Results: No deaths occurred among MSA and MSO males. Life span of MSOs was similar to that of MSAs. The courtship latency of MSAs was shorter than that of MSOs (P<0.01). MSAs had greater copulation success than MSOs (P<0.001). In all female treatments, MSAs mated more than MSOs, but the differences in rate were significant only in the highest female density (P<0.05). In MSAs, mating success varied significantly with female density (P<0.01), with the 20-female group (P<0.01) having the lowest rate. Single MSA had better mating success at the two lowest female densities. In MSOs, there were no significant differences in mating success rate between the different female densities.
Interpretation & conclusions: Our results suggested that the herbal aphrodisiac, E. longifolia, stimulated the sexual activity of Ae. aegypti and may be useful for improving the mating competitiveness of sterile males, thus improving SIT programmes.