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Title: First report of Culicoides biting midges (Diptera: Ceratopogonidae) attacking people in Italy, with the description of extreme larval breeding sites and diurnal activity of Culicoides riethi.
Authors: Federico Romiti
Fochetti, Romolo 
Adele Magliano
Vinciguerra, Vittorio 
Arianna Ermenegildi
Claudio De Liberato
Issue Date: 2021
Biting midges of the genus Culicoides (Diptera: Ceratopogonidae) play a paramount role in medical and veterinary entomology worldwide, particularly as vectors of pathogens which cause animal diseases. Biting midges are also infamous for the nuisance they provoke to people involved in outdoor activities. Nonetheless, attacks to man by midges from any Culicoides species have not been reported in Italy. An entomological investigation was performed following repeated attacks to man in a nature park near Rome (central Italy). The study area is a natural degassing zone, characterized by widespread hazardous gas emissions of CO2 and H2S, with several water bodies including permanent lakes, ponds, and pools. The biting midge C. riethi Kieffer, 1914 was very active during daytime in the period April-June. The species has been identified as responsible for attacks on people in the area. An in-depth analysis of the extreme environmental conditions revealed the ability of larvae to thrive in several water bodies, characterized by an extremely low pH and a high concentration of sulfates.
ISSN: 0022-2585
Appears in Collections:A1. Articolo in rivista

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