About Mosquito Bionomics

We are interested in these mosquito species as carriers (vectors) of the malaria parasite. Our maps show the predicted distribution of each mosquito species but to be able

Anopheles larva © IRD / Christian Bellec

to select effective vector control methods, more information is required. The term ‘bionomics’ is used to cover both the ecology of a mosquito species (e.g. larval habitats) and its behaviour (e.g. host biting preferences).

Many Anopheles vector species exhibit distinct bionomics, which have not only guided the discovery of numerous closely related species existing in the same location, but also need to be considered when deciding upon appropriate vector control strategies. This is especially true where resources are limited.

Globally, the success or failure of control can often be related to the correct understanding of the bionomics of a species. This is particularly relevant in areas of Southeast Asia where the high species diversity and number of species complexes, often occurring in the same place, creates an intricate entomological (insecty) environment.  Moreover, an up-to-date picture in specific localities is needed because of an increasing number of species adapting their behaviour over time in response to previous control efforts. For example, some mosquitoes start biting earlier in the evening and resting outdoors as a response to previous campaigns of residual indoor spraying of insecticides.

Find out about each of the 41 Anopheles species that can effectively transmit malaria using the Bionomics Page


Killeen GF., Kiware SS., Okumu FO., Sinka ME., Moyes CL., Massey NC., Gething PW., Marshall JM., Chaccour CJ., Tusting LS. (2017) Going beyond personal protection against mosquito bites to eliminate malaria transmission: population suppression of malaria vectors that exploit both human and animal blood. BMJ Global Health 2(2). [DOI: 10.1136/bmjgh-2016-000198]

Massey, N.C., Garrod, G., Wiebe, A., Henry, A.J., Huang, Z., Moyes, C.L., Sinka, M.E. (2016) A global bionomic database for the dominant vectors of human malaria. Scientific Data, 3: 160014. [DOI: 10.1038/sdata.2016.14]