Masters Theses

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Entomology and Plant Pathology

Major Professor

Reid R. Gerhardt

Committee Members

J. F. Grant, E. C. Bernard


The seasonal emergence activity of adult Ceratopogonidae and characteristics of their associated larval habitats were determined using emergence traps placed in muddy habitats in eastern Tennessee during 1985 and 1986. Species of Culicoides were identified to species, all other ceratopogonids were identified only to genus. Larval habitats were classified according to the duration of time each site was inundated with water during the study. The Culicoides spp. collected in order of abundance were C. spinosus Root and Hoffman, C. stellifer (Coquillett), C. baueri Hoffman, C. biguttatus Coquillett, C. venustus Hoffman, C. haematopotus Malloch and C. bickleyi Wirth and Hubert. Small numbers of C. obsoletus (Meigen), C. crepuscularis Malloch and C. variipennis (Coquillett) were also collected. Culicoides baueri, C. bickleyi and C. venustus were collected from sites that contained surface water throughout the study. Culicoides spinosus and C. stellifer were collected from sites of intermediate wetness, while C. haematopotus and C. biguttatus were collected from sites that were wet for less than 3 months each year. Culicoides haematopotus, C. biguttatus and C. bickleyi were present only in the spring while the rest emerged throughout the spring and summer. The effect of variation in site wetness, indicated by the presence of surface water, upon the seasonal emergence activity of the adult Ceratopogonidae was noted for each species and genus. Culicoides haematopotus, C. spinosus and C. stellifer had extended emergence periods in sites that were wet longer than in sites that dried quickly. Other Culicoides species either occurred only in a particular habitat type or were apparently unaffected by moisture variations. Seven genera of Ceratopogonidae other than Culicoides were collected between April and October 1986. In descending order of abundance these were Stilobezzia Kieffer, Dasyhelea Kieffer, Palpomyia Meigen, Atrichopogon Kieffer and Bezzia Kieffer. The genera Alluaudomyia Kieffer and Clinohelea Kieffer were collected infrequently. All genera except Atrichopogon and Dasyhelea emerged mostly in the spring. Atrichopogon was common throughout the spring and summer and Dasyhelea occurred mostly in late summer. These Ceratopogonidae were generally not affected by variations in wetness. Stilobezzia, however, had a second emergence peak in sites that remained wet for the majority of the season.

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