Culex iridescens (Lutz, 1905), original combination: Carrollia iridescens.
Subfamily Culicinae, genus Culex. Subgenus Carrollia includes 18 species. See Culex classification, Subgenus Carrollia). Subgenus abbreviation – Car.
ADULTS – Dark scales of head, proboscis, maxillary palpus, legs and abdomen almost always with metallic iridescence; vertex of head with transverse band of broad decumbent scales anteriorly, narrow decumbent scales posteriorly on vertex and on occiput or absent, orbital line without scales; proboscis about as long or longer than forefemur; maxillary palpus of females scarcely 0.25 length of proboscis, with 3 palpomeres, palpomere 4 vestigial or absent; palpus of males about as long as proboscis, slender, bare, with 5 palpomeres; acrostichal setae usually absent; dorsocentral setae present or absent; lower mesepimeral seta present; wing entirely dark-scaled; femora with patches of metallic scales; tarsi all dark-scaled or hindtarsomere 4 with broad basal pale ring; ungues of females simple, subequal on fore- and midlegs; fore- and midungues of males enlarged and uneven, larger unguis of foreleg always and that of midleg sometimes with a tooth, both with very small pulvillus, smaller unguis of fore- and midlegs simple and without pulvillus; hindungues small, simple and equal as in females but with very short pulvillus; abdomen laterally compressed, especially in males, terga with basolateral spots of pale iridescent scales; tergum VIII of males very deeply emarginate in middle, almost divided; tarsi either dark-scaled or with a pale ring at base of hindtarsomere 4. MALE GENITALIA – Ninth tergal lobes approximated or widely separated, small, simple, conical or flattened and rounded, with setae largely directly laterad; gonocoxite with or without scales; subapical lobe subapical in position, proximal division always present, bearing 2 flattened apical setae and sometimes 1 subapical or apical relatively simple seta, additional setae sometimes present on stem and base, distal division poorly developed or absent, usually with 1 lanceolate seta when present, an accessory division frequently developed near base of proximal division as a simple long digitiform process, a complex lobe with broad dorsal expansion or 2 separate columnar processes; gonostylus usually enlarged, variously shaped; phallosome not columnar, much as in species of Melanoconion, lateral plate with basal hook; paraproct with crown comprised of a single row of blunt flattened spicules; cercal sclerite usually membranous, setae present or absent. LARVAE – Antenna with small seta 1-A inserted in middle third; median labral plate poorly differentiated; palatal brush normal; seta 2-C strongly developed, mesal of seta 1-C; seta 3-C nearly always absent, rarely represented by a spicule; seta 3-P shorter than setae 1,2-P, usually branched; seta 1-VII very strongly developed, extending beyond base of siphon; seta 7-II normally similar to seta 7-III–VI; comb scales apically fringed and in a patch or spine-like and in a single row; siphon moderately long, pecten restricted to proximal 0.5, spines with or without denticles or marginal fringe; seta 1-S in irregular double posterior row of 8–16 elements and 2 accessory elements, 1 lateral and 1 posterolateral; occasionally a third posterolateral element present; saddle short, complete; seta 1-X single or branched; seta 2-X always strong, branched; seta 3-X always strong, single; ventral brush (seta 4-X) with 4–6 pairs of setae on poorly developed grid without lateral bars. PUPAE – Meatus of trumpet without slit from proximal part of pinna; seta 2-II mesad or laterad of seta 3; seta 2-III,VI,VII mesad of seta 1; seta 9-VII distinctly larger than seta 3-VII; dorsal lobe of tergum VIII not overlying lateral part of tergum IX; seta 1-IX not developed; seta 1-Pa present, rarely absent, seta 2-Pa absent. See genus Culex.
Carrollia shares similarities with other subgenera of the Melanoconion Group, but it appears to be most closely related to Tinolestes based on the absence of dorsocentral setae. Valencia (1973), however, suggested that Carrollia and the closely related Deinocerites and Galindomyia share a similar evolutionary history as derivatives from a primitive stock of subgenus Melanoconion. Carrollia shared a sister relationship with Melanoconion in a Bayesian analysis of COI sequence obtained from species of these subgenera and Microculex of the Melanoconion Group, as well as species of subgenera Culex and Phenacomyia and genus Lutzia (Demari-Silva et al., 2011).
Carrollia are sylvan mosquitoes. The immature stages are found in a variety of container habitats, including artificial containers, but occasionally occur in ground water. They are most frequently found in fallen leaves and spathes and fronds of palms, and tree holes and cut or broken bamboo. The adults are diurnal but nothing is known about the feeding habits of females. They are seldom attracted to humans.
Species of subgenus Carrollia are not of medical importance to humans.
Species of Carrollia are restricted to Neotropical forests from southern Mexico to the States of São Paulo and Paraná in Brazil and Misiones Province in northeastern Argentina, but are not known to occur south of the Guayas River Basin in Ecuador.
Valencia, 1973 (revision, subgenus and species descriptions, bionomics, distributions).
anduzei Cerqueira & Lane, 1944 antunesi Lane & Whitman, 1943 babahoyensis Levi-Castillo, 1953 bihaicolus Dyar & Núñez Tovar, 1928 bonnei Dyar, 1921 cerqueirai Valencia, 1973 guerreroi Cova García, Sutil & Pulido, 1971 infoliatus Bonne-Wepster & Bonne, 1920 insigniforceps Clastrier & Claustre, 1978 iridescens (Lutz, 1905) kompi Valencia, 1973 metempsytus Dyar, 1921 rausseoi Cova Garcia, Sutil O. & Pulido F., 1972 secundus Bonne-Wepster & Bonne, 1920 soperi Antunes & Lane, 1937 urichii (Coquillett, 1906) wannonii Cova Garcia & Sutil O., 1976 wilsoni Lane & Whitman, 1943