Distribution of the assemblage of phlebotomine sandflies (Diptera: Psychodidae) along an environmental gradient


  • Yasmine Antonini Universidade Federal de Ouro Preto, Instituto de Ciências Exatas e Biológicas, Departamento de Biodiversidade, Evolução e Meio Ambiente
  • G. Wilson Fernandes Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, Instituto de Ciências Biológicas
  • Ricardo Andrade Barata Universidade Federal dos Vales do Jequitinhonha e Mucuri


Species composition, ecology, leishmaniasis, Atlantic Forest, Brazil


Abstract The geographical distribution of leishmaniasis has undoubtedly expanded, and is now being reported to be in areas that were previously non-endemic. This study therefore aimed to investigate whether there is any variation in the structure and in the composition of phlebotomine communities along an environmental gradient - from a mesic to a xeric environment, across different climatic periods (rainy and dry seasons). Furthermore, we test whether there were differences in sex ratio of sand flies between wet and dry environments. A total of 535 specimens of sand flies belonging to 18 species were recorded. Richness, abundance, and composition of species were significatively higher in the xeric environment (semidecidual Forest) compared to the mesic environment (Riparina Forest). We unveiled site specific differences in sand fly collections since the community composition changes with the geographic distance among the sampling points. These results led to the conclusion that for sand flies species, the environmental conditions available for each species could be different within the habitat taking into account the degree of humidity in the forest as well as the climatic season (dry or wet). The present study gives a valuable contribution to the knowledge of sand flies, as a group of insects, from the Atlantic Forest biome.




How to Cite

Antonini, Y., Fernandes, G. W., & Barata, R. A. (2017). Distribution of the assemblage of phlebotomine sandflies (Diptera: Psychodidae) along an environmental gradient. Biota Neotropica, 17(2). Retrieved from //www.biotaneotropica.org.br/BN/article/view/1445




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