Recent studies on the biology and ecology of adult blackflies in relation to the transmission of human onchocerciasis in Guatemala are reviewed. First, earlier studies on the transmission of the disease since its discovery by Dr. R. Robles in 1915 are outlined. Second, eleven blackfly species caught on humans are evaluated for vector status on the basis of their natural and experimental infections with third-stage larvae of Onchocerca volvulus, and Simulium ochraceum,* S. metallicum* and S. callidum are confirmed as natural vectors of the disease in Guatemala in descending order of importance, whereas S. gonzalezi, S. haematopotum, S. veracruzanum and S. horacioi are potential vectors. Third, the migration and fate of O. volvulus microfilariae ingested by female blackflies are highlighted on the basis of the findings of the cibarial armature of S. ochraceum and physiological incompatibility of S. metallicum as main barriers against microfilariae, both of which greatly decrease the number of ingested O. volvulus microfilariae developing to the third-stage larvae per female. Fourth, among many ecological factors of female blackfly populations, geographical and altitudinal distributions, habits of blood feeding, host preferences for blood feeding, preference for human body parts, parous rates, daily and seasonal fluctuations of biting activities, in particular, of parous females, gonotrophic cycle, longevity, flight range, and annual transmission potential are reviewed, and their influences on the transmission dynamics of the disease agents are considered. Fifth, effects of air temperatures on the O. volvulus-S. ochraceum complex are examined, with a special reference to the characteristic altitudinal distributions of the disease. The importance of reliable identification of both the vector blackfly species and filarial larvae found in female blackflies is emphasized to understand the transmission of the disease. [*It is now known that these two species are actually species complexes.].
The simuliid fauna of the Oriental Region is reviewed in comparison with those in five other zoogeographical regions. It is relatively young, represented by only one genus Simulium, which is regarded as the most specialized among 26 genera of the family Simuliidae. The Oriental Region has the second largest simuliid fauna with 524 species or 23.8% of the world total of 2204 extant species. This species richness is associated with a high speciation index (15.4), reflected especially by the high speciation rates of two dominant subgenera Gomphostilbia and Simulium although the number of lineages in the Oriental Region is moderate (34 or 20.6% of the total 165). The Oriental fauna has relationships with all other zoogeographical regions at the lineage level, having the highest affinity index (31.9) with the Palearctic Region. It is inferred that eight of 10 Oriental subgenera moved during the ice ages from the Palaearctic to the Oriental Regions; the subgenus Gomphostilbia evolved into 11 species-groups and underwent species radiation in the Oriental Region. On the other hand, two other subgenera, Nevermannia and Simulium, moved southward during the ice ages after evolving into species-groups. In the post-ice ages, most lineages retreated northward, with different portions of species left in the Oriental Region, although some lineages failed to retreat and survived as relict lineages in the Oriental Region.
Recent studies on the epidemiology and control of Guatemalan onchocerciasis, chiefly made by the Guatemala-Japan Cooperative Project on Onchocerciasis Research and Control, are reviewed. Epidemiological features of Guatemalan onchocerciasis are summarized as to characteristic altitudinal distribution of endemic areas, disease manifestation, vector taxonomy, biology and transmission dynamic of the disease. Extensive insecticide studies in the field and laboratory demonstrate that the characteristic situations of Guatemalan streams where Simulium ochraceum, the main vector of onchocerciasis, breeds require ingenious methods of larviciding. Finally, the feasibility of an area vector control is indicated by the successful control operation in the San Vicente Pacaya Pilot Area, in which a new fixed-dose larviciding method was applied.
ABSTRACT A new black fly species, Simulium (Comphostilbia) langkawiense, is described based on adult female, adult male, pupal, and larval specimens collected from Langkawi Island, Malaysia. This new species is similar in the configuration of the pupal gill to Simulium (Comphostilbia) gombakense Takaoka & Davies, 1995, originally described from Peninsular Malaysia, but differs from the latter species by the female genital fork with an anterolaterally angulated plate on each arm, the female tarsal claw tooth shorter than one half of the claw, the small number of male upper-eye large facets, the ventral plate with its ventral margin nearly flat in the middle when viewed posteriorly, and the inflated structure of the pupal gill with a less produced middle portion (width of middle inflated portion: length of inflated structure = 0.24). Taxonomic notes are also given to separate this new species from two other related species from Nepal and India. This represents another example of a unique species of black fly on one of the continental islands of Peninsular Malaysia.
A new black fly species, Simulium taichungense, is described on the basis of one female, one male and two pupal exuviae from Taiwan. This new species is placed in the S. crocinum species-group of Simulium (Simulium) (Diptera: Simuliidae). It is characterized by the pupal gill with six unpigmented short filaments and pupal abdomen with distinct spine-combs on the dorsal surface of segments 7-9, by which it is easily distinguished from most species in the S. crocinum species-group including two species from Taiwan: Simulium serenum Huang Takaoka and S. ufengense Takaoka. It is the third species of the S. crocinum species-group from Taiwan. In addition, the male of S. serenum is described for the first time, and intraspecific variations in a few features of the male of S. chungi Takaoka Huang of the S. chungi species-group are noted.
Indonesia is one of the megadiversity country in the world endowed with rich and unique biodiversity insects such as blackflies species (Diptera: Simuliidae). Blackflies are found almost anywhere with running water suitable as habitat for the immature stages. This family is one of the most important groups of blood-sucking insects. This study collates the records of Simulium (Diptera: Simuliidae) in previous publications related fauna of Indonesia. Based on the results of this study, there were 124 species of blackflies in Indonesian Archipelago. All species are assigned to the genus Simulium Latreille s.l., and are placed into five subgenera, i.e. Gomphostilbia Enderlein, Morops Enderlein, Nevermannia Enderlein, Simulium Latreille s.str. and Wallacellum Takaoka. Further classification into 27 species groups within the subgenera were also made. Checklists of Indonesian Simuliidae are provided including data on the distribution of each species.
Two new species of black flies, Simulium mainitense and S. tukurongense, are described from Palawan, the Philippines. Both species are placed in the Simulium nitidithorax subgroup of the Simulium tuberosum species-group of Simulium (Simulium). They are characterized by the female sensory vesicle of medium length, pupal thorax covered with round tubercles, and anterodorsal trichomes on the pupal thorax longer than frontal trichomes. This combination of characters separates these two new species from S. quasifrenum Delfinado, the only previously known member of the S. nitidithorax subgroup from Palawan, and nine other related species from Sabah, Sarawak, Peninsular Malaysia and India. Simulium mainitense sp. nov. is distinguished from S. tukurongense sp. nov. in the female by the somewhat larger body size, and greater length ratio of the labrum against the clypeus; and in the pupa by the much longer gill filaments.
The male, pupa and mature larva of Simulium (Asiosimulium) wanchaii Takaoka & Choochote, one of the four species of the small Oriental black fly subgenus Asiosimulium, are described for the first time based on samples collected from Thailand. The male S. (A.) wanchaii is characterized based on the enlarged hind basitarsus and the ventral plate which is much wider than long. The pupa and larva are characterized by the gill with 19 filaments and the deep postgenal cleft, respectively. Keys are provided to identify all the four species of the subgenus Asiosimulium for females, males, pupae and mature larvae.
Simulium (Gomphostilbia) sofiani sp. nov. is described on the basis of reared adult female, male, pupal and larval specimens collected from Cameron Highlands, Pahang state, Malaysia. This new species is placed in the ceylonicum species-group within the subgenus Gomphostilbia and is easily distinguished from all the related known species by the combination of the following characteristics: an elongate sensory vesicle and yellow hair tuft on the stem vein of the wing in the female, the greater number of large upper-eye facets (15 or 16 vertical columns and 15 or 16 horizontal rows) and almost entirely darkened hind basitarsus in the male, and the gill bearing a long common basal stalk and 8 filaments arranged as [(1+2)+(1+2)] +2 filaments from dorsal to ventral in the pupa.
Simulium chayamaritae Takaoka and Srisuka from Thailand belongs to the Simulium darjeelingense species-group of Simulium (Simulium) (Diptera: Simuliidae). The female of this species is described for the first time based on a female reared from a pupa collected from Chiang Mai, Thailand. It is characterized by the sensory vesicle elongate and the inner margins of the arms of the genital fork divergent, then convergent apically. It is similar to the female of S. eshimai Takaoka and Adler of the same speciesgroup from Vietnam. Taxonomic notes are given to separate it from two other species of the S. darjeelingense species-group from India and Malaysia, and 28 of 31 other species of the subgenus Gomphostilbia recorded from Thailand.
A rare non-sex mosaic abnormality represented by genitalia-like appendages on the ventral surface of abdominal segment 8 of a male black fly collected in Hokkaido, Japan, is reported. The appendages consist of a pair of style-like projections each arising from a coxite-like base, inverted-Y shaped ventral plate-like structure, and isolated round structure. This male was morphologically and molecularly identified as an abnormal form of S. (S.) iwatense (Shiraki), the only species in the Simulium (Simulium) ornatum species-group in Japan, although certain morphological characteristics of this male including the reduced number of uppereye (large) facets and elongate cerci are different from those of S. (S.) iwatense.
Two new black fly species, Simulium (Gomphostilbia) brinchangense and S. (G.) tanahrataense, are described on the basis of reared adult females, males, pupae and larvae from Cameron's Highlands, Peninsular Malaysia. These new species are assigned to the asakoae species-group within Simulium (Gomphostilbia) and taxonomic notes are given to distinguish each new species from six known species in Malaysia. Revised keys to identify all 21 species including 13 species from other countries are provided for females, males, pupae and mature larvae. The species diversity of the asakoae species-group in Cameron's Highlands is briefly noted.
Two new species of black flies, Simulium (Gomphostilbia) roslihashimisp. n. and Simulium (Gomphostilbia) lurauensesp. n., are described on the basis of reared adult, pupal and larval specimens collected from Peninsular Malaysia. These two new species are placed in the ceylonicum species-group within the subgenus Gomphostilbia. Simulium (Gomphostilbia) roslihashimisp. n. is most distinctive with the male having almost entirely yellow antennae, and Simulium (Gomphostilbia) lurauensesp. n. is characterized in the female by having the elongate sensory vesicle and the yellowish-white hairs on the base of the costal vein and on the stem vein, in the male by the greater number of large upper-eye facets and the spindle-shaped hind basitarsi which are much narrower than the hind tibiae and femora and in the pupa by the small terminal hooks. Keys to species of the ceylonicum species-group reported from Peninsular Malaysia are provided for females, males, pupae and mature larvae.
We describe Onchocerca dewittei japonica n. subsp. from the Japanese wild boar, Sus scrofa leucomystax, in Oita, Kyushu Island, where all seven animals examined were found to be infected. This study began with efforts to identify the causative species in a recent case of zoonotic onchocerciasis. Compared with Onchocerca dewittei dewittei from Sus scrofa jubatus in Malaysia, which was reexamined here, our new subspecies has much greater space between the ridges on the females. In addition, its microfilariae (from uteri) are shorter (192-210 microns compared with 228-247 microns), and only the posterior third of the microfilarial body is coiled, instead of the entire body. The Onchocerca species parasitic in suids (these two subspecies and O. ramachandrini from the warthog in the Ethiopian region) form a group sharing several characters. Among the most unusual characters are the body swellings (a specialized apparatus for mating, known in only a few other genera). In addition, longitudinal cuticular crests were found on males of both subspecies from wild boar and on females of O. ramachandrini.
Simulium (Nevermannia) chomthongense sp. nov. is described from female, male, pupal and larval specimens collected from Doi Inthanon National Park and Doi Phahompok National Park, Chiang Mai, Thailand. This new species, first reported as S. (Eusimulium) sp. A, and later regarded as S. (N.) caudisclerum Takaoka & Davies, described from peninsular Malaysia, is distinguished from S. (N.) caudisclerum in the male by the number of enlarged upper-eye facets and the relative size of the hind basitarsus against the hind tibia and femur, and in the pupa by the relative length of the stalks of paired filaments against the common basal stalk and the color of the dorsal surface of abdominal segments 1- 3 (or 4). Taxonomic and molecular notes are provided to separate this new species from four other known species of the vernum species-group, which share an accessory sclerite on the larval abdomen, a rare characteristic in this species-group.
Simulium (Nevermannia) ledangense sp. nov. is described from females, males, pupae and mature larvae from Peninsular Malaysia. This new species is assigned to the Simulium feuerborni species-group of the subgenus Nevermannia, and is characterized by the pupa having a very long stalk of the ventral paired gill filaments, which is almost five times longer than the interspiracular trunk and female tergites of segments 2 and 5 to 7 shiny. Taxonomic notes are given to distinguish this new species from three known species of the S. feuerborni species-group from Malaysia.
Simulium (Gomphostilbia) hiroyukii is described based on females, males, pupae and larvae collected in Mount Murud, Sarawak, Malaysia. This new species is assigned to the Simulium darjeelingense species-group of the subgenus Gomphostilbia, and is characterized by the darkened fore coxae and the pupal gill with eight long filaments, of which middle and dorsal triplets have elongated primary and secondary stalks, respectively.
Two new black fly species, Simulium (Gomphostilbia) tekamense and Simulium (Gomphostilbia) jerantutense, are described based on adult females emerged from pupae in Peninsular Malaysia, and assigned to the binuanense subgroup of the batoense species-group in the subgenus Gomphostilbia. Simulium (G.) tekamense sp. nov. is characterized in the female by the subcosta with 0-2 hairs, and presence of a deep notch on the apex of the mediolongitudinal ridge of the cibarium, and in the pupa by one of two paired gill filaments of the middle triplet much thicker than the counter filament. Simulium (G.) jerantutense sp. nov. is characterized in the female by the short claw tooth 0.46 times the length of the claw, and in the pupa by the gill filaments arranged as [2+1+(1+2)]+2 filaments from dorsal to ventral. Taxonomic notes are given to distinguish these new species from related species.
Two new blackfly species, Simulium (Gomphostilbia) azhari and Simulium (Gomphostilbia) johorense, are described based on adult females, males, pupae, and larvae collected from Peninsular Malaysia, and assigned to the parahiyangum subgroup and the duolongum subgroup of the batoense species group of the subgenus Comphostilbia, respectively. S. (G.) azhari sp. nov. is characterized in the female by the narrow frons, and in the male by the broad style and the ventral plate moderately produced ventrally. S. (G.) johorense sp. nov. is also remarkable in having the female subcosta lacking hairs or bearing a reduced number of hairs ranging from one to five. The pupae of both new species share a similar arrangement of the eight gill filaments (i.e., stalks of dorsal and middle triplets and ventral pair arising at the same level from the short common basal stalk), although relative lengths of filaments of the ventral pair to those of the dorsal and middle triplets are different between the two new species. Taxonomic notes are given to distinguish these new species from other related species. Keys to identify all 10 species of the batoense species group in Peninsular Malaysia are provided for adult females, males, pupae, and mature larvae.
Simulium (Comphostilbia) izuae sp. nov. is described from female, male, pupal, and larval specimens collected from Cameron's Highlands, Peninsular Malaysia. This new species is placed in the asakoae species-group of the subgenus Gomphostilbia. The pupa of this new species is characterized by the gill with eight long filaments arranged as (3 + 3) + 2 filaments, of which the ventral pair of filaments is borne on a stalk that is always shorter than the common basal stalk. Taxonomic notes to distinguish this new species from five other Malaysian species and 12 other species of the asakoae species-group from other countries are given. Keys to identify all 18 species of the asakoae species-group are also provided for females, males, pupae, and mature larvae.