Anopheles (Nyssorhynchus) albimanus Wiedemann, 1820

Anopheles albimanus
Anopheles albimanus © James Gathany / CDC


The larval sites used by Anopheles albimanus are characterised across its range as open, sunlit and containing clear water. This species can be found in natural and man-made habitats where these characteristics exist. For example, it occurs in recently planted rice fields, or in older fields with sunlit areas in between the rice plants. An. albimanus has been associated with floating mats of blue-green algae, which are often found in sunlit waters. The larvae of this ubiquitous species tolerate a wide variation in water chemistry and are able to exploit diverse food sources, enabling them to survive in both fresh water (e.g. irrigation channels, small ponds, marshes, slow flowing streams and river margins) and brackish water (e.g. mangrove swamps).

Resting and feeding preferences

Anopheles albimanus is predominantly exophagic with exophilic resting behaviour, however there is some indication that in the northern reaches of its distribution (Mexico, Central America), this species exhibits a preference for resting indoors after feeding. In a study that ultimately influenced changes in the vector control regime in southern Mexico, it was shown that 80% of females landed indoors after feeding. An. albimanus bites in the evening and during the night. It appears to show a tendency for zoophily, but this is dependent upon location. In Colombia, An. albimanus has been found to exhibit a high degree of anthropophily. In contrast, this species has been described as highly zoophilic in Mexico, however, host availability and other ecological conditions influence the host choice of this species.

Vectorial capacity

Anopheles albimanus is considered to be a dominant malaria vector species.

Further details and the sources for this text can be found in

Sinka, M.E., Rubio-Palis, Y., Manguin, S., Patil, A.P., Temperley, W.H., Gething, P.W., Van Boeckel, T.P., Kabaria, C.W., Harbach, R.E. and Hay, S.I. (2010). The dominant Anopheles vectors of human malaria in the Americas: occurrence data, distribution maps and bionomic précis. Parasites & Vectors, 3:72

This text has come from multiple sources which are all listed in the above paper