Culex (genus)

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Culex nigripalpus female (click on image to enlarge it)
Author(s): Sean McCann
Source: BugGuide

Culex Linnaeus, 1758

This is a very large genus of mosquitoes with more than 700 species and a nearly world-wide distribution. However, it is not found as far north as some Aedes species. Many species are nuisance pests and several are important vectors of human and animal disease, including the West Nile virus, the chikungunya virus, filariasis, and encephalitis. Hosts are predominantly mammals, but may be also birds or reptiles.

The species breed in different types of standing water, including ponds, marshes and water-filled containers. The eggs are laid as rafts on the water surface. There are multiple generations per year.

The adults are 4-10 mm long and typically uniformly brownish in coloration. At rest, the abdomen of the adult is inclined towards the surface. The tip of the abdomen is blunt. The palpi have 4 (rarely 5) segments and reach about one quarter of the length of the proboscis in females.

Currently, the following species have been entered into the system: