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Conference Abstract
Preliminary results on species composition of the biting midges-fauna (Culicoides) in a wetland on Lower Danube Flow, Bulgaria
expand article infoAneliуa Bobeva, Bruno Mathieu§
‡ Institute of Biodiversity and Ecosystem Research (IBER), Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, Sofia, Bulgaria
§ Institute of Parasitology and Tropical Pathology (IPPTS), University of Strasbourg, Strasbourg, France
Open Access

Abstract

Biting midges of the genus Culicoides Latreille, 1809 (Diptera: Ceratopogonidae) are competent vectors of various pathogens in Europe with veterinary importance such as: Bluetongue virus, Schmallenberg virus, Epizootic hemorrhagic disease virus and avian haemosporidians. In order to reveal the potential role that they may play in spreading diseases in wildlife and thus the impact on ecosystems which they render, a reliable estimation of their faunistic diversity is required. Previous surveys conducted in the region of Kalimok Biological Station – a wetland on Lower Danube flow – were focused mainly on the ornithophilic species acting as vectors of avian haemosporidians, and thus leaving out the whole Culicoides diversity in the area underestimated (Bobeva et al. 2013, Bobeva et al. 2014, Bobeva et al. 2015). In the present study, we combined morphological and molecular approaches for species identification of the biting midges collected in the region of the field station in 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2018 years. Out of the 37 Culicoides species reported previously as national fauna (Nedelchev 2013, Pudar et al. 2018), we recorded 13 species in the studied area. In addition, three species namely, Culicoides duddingstoni, C. griseidorsum and C. кibunensis were newly recorded for the Bulgarian fauna, which raises the number of species of national fauna to 40. Interesting specimens affiliated to C. pseudopallidus have been collected in Kalimok. This latter species has not been reported in Central and Eastern Europe so far and therefore further attention is required prior being considered as a new record. Regarding the potential vectors of avian haemosporidians in the studied area, the present investigation raised the list of species suspected for spreading this disease in wildlife from three to six, namely: C. alazanicus, C. circumscriptus, C. duddingstoni, C. griseidorsum, C. kibunensis and C. pictipennis. The current study of the biting midges’ biodiversity improved the knowledge about the Bulgarian Culicoides fauna including the list of the potential vector species of avian malaria. However, faunistic studies on Culicoides in Europe remain sparse and such data serves as a basic knowledge for a better understanding of the Culicoides-borne diseases.

Keywords

biodiversity, Culicoides biting midges, vectors

Presenting author

Aneliya Bobeva

Presented at

Vth International Congress on Biodiversity: „Taxonomy, Speciation and Euro-Mediterranean Biodiversity“

Acknowledgements

This work was partially supported by the Bulgarian Ministry of Education and Science under the National Research Programme “Young scientists and postdoctoral students” approved by DCM # 577/17.08.2018 and by the Program for Support of Young Researchers and PhD Students at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences (Grant no. 17-92/28.07.2017)

Funding program

  • Program for Support of Young Researchers and PhD Students at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences (Grant no. 17-92/28.07.2017
  • National Research Programme “Young scientists and postdoctoral students” approved by DCM # 577/17.08.2018

Grant title

  • Culicoides biting midges on the Lower Danube flow: morphological and molecular approaches for species identification of the genus Culicoides (Diptera: Ceratopogonidae)
  • Culicoides biting midges in Bulgaria

References