Behavioural shifts in the canonical location and timing of biting have been reported in natural populations of anopheline malaria vectors following the implementation of insecticide-based indoor vector control interventions. These modifications increase the likelihood of human-vector contact and allow mosquitoes to avoid insecticides, both conditions being favourable to residual transmission of the malarial parasites. The biting behaviour of mosquitoes follows rhythms that are under the control of biological clocks and environmental conditions, modulated by physiological states. In this work we explore modifications of spontaneous locomotor activity expressed by mosquitoes in different physiological states to highlight phenotypic variability associated to circadian control that may contribute to explain residual transmission in the field.
Anopheles gambiae and Aedes aegypti are perhaps the best studied mosquito species and important carriers of human malaria and arbovirus, respectively. Mosquitoes have daily rhythms in behaviors and show a wide range of activity patterns. Although Anopheles is known to be principally nocturnal and Aedes principally diurnal, details of mosquito activity are not easily assayed in the laboratory.