Abundance and seasonality of biting midges at a continental scale in Europe. [P2 6]

Cuéllar Ana Carolina, Kjær Lene Jung, Skovgaard Henrik, Nielsen Soren Achim, Stockmarr Anders, Anderson G., Lindstrom Anders, Chirico Jan, Lühken Renke, Steinke Sonja, Kiel Ellen, Larska Magdalena, Hamnes Inger, Sviland Stale, Hopp Petter, Brugger Katharina, Rubel Franz, Balenghien Thomas, Garros Claire, Rakotoarivony Ignace, Allene Xavier, Lhoir Jonathan, Delecolle Jean Claude, Mathieu Bernard, Delecolle Delphine, Setier-Rio Marie-Laure, Venail Roger, Scheid Bethsabée, Miranda-Chueca Miguel Angel, Barcelo Carlos, Lucientes Javier, Estrada Rosa, Tack Wesley, Mathis Alexander, Bodker René. 2017. Abundance and seasonality of biting midges at a continental scale in Europe. [P2 6]. In : Abstract book of the 11th Epizone Annual Meeting welcome in Paris. anses. Paris : ANSES, Résumé, p. 117. Annual Meeting EPIZONE: Crossing barriers, Paris, France, 19 September 2017/21 September 2017.

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Abstract : Background: Culicoides biting midges are hematophagous insects of veterinary importance able to transmit viruses such as bluetongue virus and Schmallenberg virus to livestock. The aim of this work was to describe the average temporal abundance of biting midges at a continental scale, by comparing the seasonal variation at six different latitude ranges from southern Spain to northern Sweden. Materials and methods: We gathered Culicoides obsoletus group trap data collected by national surveillance programs in nine European countries (Spain, France Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Poland) from 2007-2013. In total, 904 farms were sampled for Culicoides midges using UV light traps. We divided Europe into 6 latitudinal bands of 5° width and calculated the average weekly midge abundance as well as the average annual cumulative sum of biting midges for each of these bands. We plotted the results to visualize the spatial and temporal patterns at a continental scale. Results: The midge season began earlier in southern Europe (week 10) compared to northern latitudes (week 19). The season also lasted longer at southern latitudes and became progressively shorter towards the northern latitudes. Abundance peaks occurred during spring and summer at all six latitudinal ranges. Despite the steadily shorter vector season in the north of Europe, the annual cumulative sum of biting midges increased towards the north. Norway and Sweden with the shortest vector periods, had the highest number of the C. obsoletus group, reaching a cumulative sum of 455.000 midges on average annually, with some traps collecting more than 110.000 in one night. Discussion: Temperature drives the start and length of the midge season at different latitudes, but it does not seem to drive the increasing abundance towards the north. A possible explanation could be that midge abundance may be more related to breeding site availability and soil moisture than temperature. Conclusion: This is the first time quantitative seasonal abundances for biting midges have been aggregated and jointly analyzed for the whole of Western Europe. By ignoring the fine scale variation in abundance between farms and regions, we have isolated and quantified an overall south-north trend in the temporal abundance of biting midges. These results may facilitate decision making by e.g. the EU member states when objectives and joint decisions are needed for prevention and control of midge-borne infections on a continental scale. (Résumé d'auteur)

Classification Agris : L72 - Pests of animals
L73 - Animal diseases

Auteurs et affiliations

  • Cuéllar Ana Carolina, NVI (DNK)
  • Kjær Lene Jung, NVI (DNK)
  • Skovgaard Henrik, Aarhus University (DNK)
  • Nielsen Soren Achim, Roskilde University (DNK)
  • Stockmarr Anders, Technical University of Denmark (DNK)
  • Anderson G., National Veterinary Institute (SWE)
  • Lindstrom Anders, National Veterinary Institute (SWE)
  • Chirico Jan, National Veterinary Institute (SWE)
  • Lühken Renke, Bernhard Nocht Institut fuer Schiffs und Tropenkrankheiten (DEU)
  • Steinke Sonja, Bernhard Nocht Institut fuer Schiffs und Tropenkrankheiten (DEU)
  • Kiel Ellen, Bernhard Nocht Institut fuer Schiffs und Tropenkrankheiten (DEU)
  • Larska Magdalena, National Veterinary Research Institute (POL)
  • Hamnes Inger, Norwegian Veterinary Institute (NOR)
  • Sviland Stale, Norwegian Veterinary Institute (NOR)
  • Hopp Petter, Norwegian Veterinary Institute (NOR)
  • Brugger Katharina, Institute for Veterinary Public Health (AUT)
  • Rubel Franz, Institute for Veterinary Public Health (AUT)
  • Balenghien Thomas, CIRAD-BIOS-UMR ASTRE (MAR)
  • Garros Claire, CIRAD-BIOS-UMR ASTRE (REU) ORCID: 0000-0003-4378-5031
  • Rakotoarivony Ignace, CIRAD-BIOS-UMR ASTRE (FRA)
  • Allene Xavier, CIRAD-BIOS-UMR ASTRE (FRA)
  • Lhoir Jonathan
  • Delecolle Jean Claude, Faculté de médecine de Strasbourg (FRA)
  • Mathieu Bernard, EID (FRA)
  • Delecolle Delphine, Université de Strasbourg (FRA)
  • Setier-Rio Marie-Laure, EID (FRA)
  • Venail Roger, EID (FRA)
  • Scheid Bethsabée, EID (FRA)
  • Miranda-Chueca Miguel Angel, UIB (ESP)
  • Barcelo Carlos, UIB (ESP)
  • Lucientes Javier, Universidad de Zaragoza (ESP)
  • Estrada Rosa, University of Zaragoza (ESP)
  • Tack Wesley, Avia-GIS (BEL)
  • Mathis Alexander, University of Zurich (CHE)
  • Bodker René, NVI (DNK)

Source : Cirad-Agritrop (

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