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  • Glossary of Terms

    A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q S T U V W X Y Z


    a larvicide material; trade name for temephos


    not biological; characterized by the absence of life


    the mature stage of a mosuito’s life


    is an insecticide that targets control of the adult life stage of an insect


    requires oxygen to live, living or active only in the presence of oxygen; usually in reference to bacteria


    collection; group


    chemicals used for agricultural use; e.g. herbicides, pesticides, fertilizers


    to increase or intensify

    Amplifying Hosts

    in mosquito-borne disease ecology, the vertebrate hosts which are fed on by infected mosquitoes, become infected and serve as a source of the disease agent for other mosquitoes; generally these hosts are not affected by the infection


    comes from the words arthropod borne; any of a group of RNA viruses, including those that cause yellow fever, dengue, Eastern equine encephalitis, St. Louis encephalitis and West Nile Virus, which are transmitted to animals and man by mosquitoes, biting flies and ticks


    as used by mosquito control: insects of public health or nuisance importance, including all mosquitoes, midges, sand flies, dog flies, yellow flies and house flies


    the process of producing minute or very small droplets

    Avian Pox Virus

    a disease of many wild and domestic birds, causing numerous mucinous tumors in the skin; transmitted by mosquitoes by mechanical means only; for more information go to http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/VM021


    the form of a pathogenic organism (e.g. virus, bacteria) that is not highly infectious or does not cause disease; no longer virulent


    a wall or mound of earth; a ledge or shoulder, as along the edge of a road


    destruction or suppression of undesirable animals or plants by the introduction of or manipulated enhancement of a pests’ natural enemies


    of or relating to ecology or biology of an organism


    of or related to plants


    somewhat salty, containing a mixture of seawater and fresh water


    a member of the pineapple family of plants, usually having stiff, leathery leaves and spikes of bright flowers, often grown under shade trees; “tank” bromeliads such as Tillandsia, Billbergia and Neoregelia hold water and can produce mosquitoes


    a large group of mosquitoes that hatch or emerge at the same time; sometimes referred to as a generation of mosquitoes

    Bs – (Bacillus sphaericus)

    is a naturally occurring soil bacterium that infects and kills mosquito larvae, microbial insecticide that is commercially available

    Bti – (Bacillus thuringienis israelensis)

    is a is a naturally occurring soil bacterium that controlls mosquito larvae; microbial insecticide that is commercially available, which is highly selective, controlling the larval stage of mosquitoes and black flies


    of a tree, that portion above the trunk, usually the leafy area, that forms a cover above open space between the ground and tree branches


    tall, slender leaved emergent plant from the genus Typha, often found clogging ditches and retention areas; often associated with Coquillettidia perturbans mosquito larvae

    CDC Light Trap

    a surveillance tool that was developed by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control to provide a reliable and portable sampling device for the collection of mosquitoes and sand flies used in arbovirus studies, taxonomic studies and population density surveys; mosquitoes are attracted to a light and carbon dioxide bait then held in a collection net or jar


    For more information go to chikungunya ENY-736.


    process of becoming solid, as in the clotting of blood


    a minute, aquatic invertebrate abundant in both fresh and salt water which preys upon mosquito larvae


    a conduit, especially a drain, as a pipeline construction of stone, concrete or metal that passes under a road etc, or through an embankment or dike

    Dead-End Host

    in the ecology of disease organism, those infected hosts from which the organism cannot be transmitted to another host in the normal manner; i.e., the mosquito cannot pick up the virus from the blood, for example: a human may become infected with EEE but becomes a dead end host as a mosquito cannot pick up the virus from a human and transmit it to another organism

    Deer Fly

    a biting fly of the family Tabanidae, genus Chrysops that is triangular in shape and about ½” long; related to but smaller than horse flies


    (N,N-diethyl-m-toluamide), insect repellent; for more information on DEET go to http://www.deetonline.org/


    also known as “breakbone fever”; an acute viral infection characterized by headache, severe joint pain and a rash; common in tropical Americas and once common in Florida, it is transmitted by Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus, there are 4 subtypes of dengue; for more information go to  http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/IN699


    any accumulation of disintegrated material or debris; in biology, the breakdown of organic materials


    a period of spontaneous dormancy between periods of activity; typically caused by environmental conditions


    the order of insects that includes flies, gnats, and mosquitoes


    as used by mosquito control: any mosquito control program established in Florida by law for the express purpose of controlling arthropods within boundaries of said district


    abbreviation for deoxyribonucleic acid, a protein associated with the transmission of double stranded genetic information found in cell nuclei and especially in the genes

    Dog Heartworm

    a very common, parasitic worm (Dirofilaria immitis); disease of canines and to a lesser extent cats that can be debilitating, even fatal; transmitted by a large number of mosquito species; for more information on mosquito-borne dog heartworm disease go to www.heartwormsociety.org or http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/MG100.


    having biological activity suspended; as being in a state of suspended animation; similar to diapauses

    Eastern Encephalitis

    also known as eastern equine encephalitis or EEE. A viral disease of humans and horses associated with Culiseta melanura and transmitted to mammals by Aedes, Coquillettidia, and other mosquitoes; for more information on EEE go to http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/document_in179



    Emergent Plants

    aquatic plants that are rooted in the soil with the leaves extending above the water surface; examples: arrowhead, water lily, American lotus, smartweed, cattail


    of or near the brain


    inflammation of the brain or brain stem; for more information on encephalitis caused by mosquitoes go to http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/PS045


    inflammation of the brain and spinal cord


    a disease constantly present in a particular region; native to a particular country, nation, or region, said of plants, animals and customs


    the scientific study of insects


    an outbreak of disease affecting many individuals at once; a sudden rapid spread, growth or development of an insect population; according to the Department of Health definition, an outbreak of disease affecting one individual above the norm


    the study of the causes and control of disease, all the elements contributing to the occurrence or non-occurrence of a disease in a population; ecology of disease


    a disease prevalent and spreading rapidly among many individuals of animals in a community at the same time


    related to an estuary


    an inlet or arm of the sea; especially the lower portion or wide mouth of a river, where the salty tide meets the freshwater current; the part of the wide lower course of a river where its current is met by the tides


    not native to the place where found, see endemic


    increasing in extraordinary proportions because of greatly increased population


    the animals occurring, developed or adapted or living in a specified environment, as distinguished from flora


    of or characterized by a fever; feverish


    plant life characteristic to a particular area, as distinguished from fauna



    Focus or Foci

    any center of activity, such as a disease or mosquito breeding


    is a genus of fish in family Poeciliidae (order Cyprinodontiformes); principally found in freshwater habitats though some species may also be found in brackish or saltwater habitats; also known as mosquitofish, which, however, refers more specifically to one species, G. affinis


    a fertile area in the southern United States that often is somewhat higher than its surroundings and is characterized by hardwood vegetation

    Hay infusion

    the highly odorous protein-rich water that results from soaking hay or grass in water for several days or weeks; on a large scale, in wet yards or fields this is very attractive for egg laying and mosquito development

    High marsh

    salt marsh which is not inundated by daily tides and hence can serve as a mosquito breeding site, as distinguished from low marsh

    Imported malaria

    malaria acquired outside of the United States; airport malaria is malaria acquired near an airport due to infected travelers or infected mosquitoes that comes from a malarial area; for more information on malaria go to http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/MG103


    Method of controlling salt marsh mosquitoes by creating a berm around a high salt marsh and flooding it during mosquito breeding season, achieving control by depriving salt marsh mosquitoes of suitable egg laying habitat

    Induced malaria

    malaria acquired through artificial means i.e. blood transfusion, or common syringes

    Infection rate

    the percent of a group of organisms including humans that become infected with a microorganism when exposed to a specific concentration of the microorganism; often dose related


    the four phases of a mosquito larva

    Integrated Pest Management

    also know IPM, a pest control strategy that uses an array of complementary methods: mechanical devices, physical devices, genetic, biological, legal, cultural management, and chemical management; the opposite of set calendar spraying

    Intermediate Host

    in parasitology, a host in which a parasite develops to some extent but not to sexual maturity


    an organism which does not have a spinal column


    the artificial watering of land by canals, ditches, pipes or flooding to supply moisture for plant growth


    an adulticide material

    La Crosse Virus

    a mosquito transmitted arbovirus that belongs in a group of mosquito borne viruses called the California group; that causes encephalitis in humans and is transmitted primarily by the tree hole breeding mosquito Aedes triseriatus, common in the mid-west United States; for more information on La Crosse Virus go to http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/PS045


    a shallow sound, channel, pond or lake near or connected with the sea; a shallow body of water, especially one separated from a sea by sandbars or coral reefs

    Landing Rate Count

    a surveillance method for determining the density of a local mosquito population; an individual records the number of mosquitoes that land on the observer over a designated period of time


    for mosquitoes: the feeding aquatic state of the mosquito, commonly referred to as a wiggler or wriggler due to the lashing movement of the body sideways in the water


    is an insecticide that is specifically targeted against the larval life stage of an insect or a chemical or biological product targeting the control of the aquatic life stage of an insect


    dormant but capable of normal development under correct conditions; present but invisible or inactive; lying hidden and undeveloped with a person or thing


    an embankment, often of soil, built alongside a river or field to prevent flooding or to contain water

    Low Marsh

    salt marsh which is inundated by daily tides, as distinguished from high marsh

    Maintenance host

    those host species essential for keeping a microorganism present in an area especially when the organism is at low levels; can also include hosts that harbor the organism during non-transmission phases such as winter


    a vague feeling of physical discomfort or uneasiness; as early in an illness


    an infectious disease, generally intermittent and recurrent, cause by any of 4 protozoan of the genus Plasmodium that are parasitic in the red blood corpuscles and are transmitted to humans by Anopheles mosquitoes and to birds and other mammals by a variety of mosquito genera; for more information on Malaria go to http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/MG103


    an adulticide material


    any of various coastal or aquatic tropical trees or shrubs, that grow in saline coastal habitats, that form large colonies in swamps or shallow water and provide habitat for a variety of organisms; in Florida, the red mangrove (Rhisophora mangle), the black mangrove (Avicennia germinans) and the white mangrove (Laguncularia racemosa)


    relating to the chemical changes in living cells by which energy is provided for vital life processes


    the fours stages of a mosquito’s life; consisting of egg, larva, pupa, and adult.


    is a larvicide material


    a unit of length equal to one thousandth of a millimeter


    the weather which occurs on a very local basis, such as a neighborhood or block


    also known as “blind” mosquitoes because they look like mosquitoes but do not bite, non-biting midge flies or chironomids commonly occur in inland and coastal natural and man-made bodies of water


    the shedding of the exoskeleton when a mosquito larva goes through the four phases of the larval stage of a mosquito’s life cycle

    Monomolecular Film

    is a larvicide material


    the rate of sickness in a specific community or group


    structural, relating to a body part

    Mosquito  fish

    commonly used for fish of the genus Gambusia but not limited entirely to them; more rarely, any fish that eats mosquito larvae

    Mortality Rate

    the proportion of deaths in a specific population


    two winged flies that belong to the family Culicidae in the order Diptera; there are over 3,500 species of mosquitoes; for more information on mosquitoes go to http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/IN652


    a pain in one or more muscles


    an adulticide material; also known by trade name: Dibrom


    microscopic worms which often are parasites of man, animals, plants, and insects


    microhabitat; site supplying the necessary physical and biological conditions necessary for the life of an organism


    here are over 4,000 species of biting midges in the Ceratopogonidae family, and over 1,000 in just one genus, Culicoides; 47 species are known to occur in Florida; breeding areas can be very varied depending on the particular species. Areas with substantial salt marsh habitat are major producers of many biting midge species.


    1-octen-3-ol, a volatile compound that has been isolated from ox breath and is synthesized for use as an attractant in traps for tsetse flies and mosquitoes

    Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus

    (p-menthane 3,8-diol (PMD)), insect repellent, an essential oil


    (KBR 3023) insect repellent; sometimes known as “Bayrepel” outside the US


    organisms that obtain nutritional requirements from another host organism but usually does not kill the host organism


    largest order of birds, consisting chiefly of perching songbirds, including fly catchers, larks, swallows, crows, jays, chickadees, nuthatches, wrens, mockingbirds, thrashers, thrushes, gnatcatchers, waxwings, shrikes, starlings, vireos, tanagers, warblers, blackbirds, orioles, finches and sparrows


    a specific cause of a disease including bacteria, protozoa, the fungi or virus


    is an adulticide material and can be used as a repellent


    living organisms that are found where they are not wanted or that cause damage to crops or humans or other plants and animals


    any substance or mixture of substances intended for preventing, destroying, repelling or mitigating any pest


    a measure used to express the acidity and alkalinity on a scale of 0 to 14 with 7 representing neutrality, values below 7 indicating acidity and values over 7 expressing alkalinity


    a submerged or exposed root which functions as a respiratory organ of a swamp or marsh plant like the black mangrove; erect roots that are some form of upward appendage or extension of the underground root system


    preying on other animals


    the mouthpart of the mosquito


    the exposed, upright roots of the red mangrove which appear to prop up the plant


    a general term referring to all single-cell organisms excluding bacteria, rickettsia and viruses, some of which are parasites on mosquitoes and other serious parasites of man


    the non-feeding aquatic stage of mosquitoes shaped like a comma; the stage in mosquito metamorphosis between larva and adult


    a plant product derived from some chrysanthemums and used as an insecticide


    a floating, cohesive mass of mosquito eggs


    the tendency of larvae to congregate in very thick masses; also known as balling


    a substance used to repel insects; for more information on repellents go to http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/IN419

    Reservoir Host

    the animal species in which a pathogen is maintained during periods when transmission is low or absent


    abbreviation for ribonucleic acid, is similar in design to DNA, but is a single strand; is central to the synthesis of proteins associated with the control of cellular chemical activities, and is important in the genetic makeup of many viruses


    consisting of or containing salt

    Salt Marsh

    flat land subject to flooding by salt water


    something that keeps watch, as in sentinel chickens used to monitor for the presence of St. Louis encephalitis, EEE, and or West Nile Virus

    St. Louis Encephalitis (SLE)

    a disease caused by the mosquito borne virus affecting humans, transmitted by Culex mosquitoes in North America and amplified in wild birds; for more information on SLE go to http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/MG337

    Source Reduction

    elimination of mosquito producing sites, physical land or water management of arthropod breeding areas to reduce the area’s suitability for mosquito breeding


    absorbed into and effective throughout the body of an organism


    a larvicide material; also known as trade name Abate

    Temperature Inversion

    when the temperature increases rather than decreases with increasing height which can greatly affect adulticiding applications or operations

    Tidal Creek

    a creek in a salt marsh or mangrove forest formed and maintained by the natural drainage of tidal waters during ebb tide


    cyclic rising and falling of Earth’s ocean surface caused by the tidal forces of the moon and the sun acting on the oceans

    Lunar Tides

    tides associated with the movement of the moon

    Neap Tides

    during the quarter moons, the sun partially cancels lunar pull, producing smaller tidal ranges

    Spring Tides

    during the new and full moons, the sun and moon combine to produce extra high tidal ranges


    physical and natural features of an area, especially elevation

    Transmission rate

    the rate at which a pathogen is transmitted from an infected host to an uninfected host

    Transovarial Transmission

    passed from mother to offspring through the ovary

    Truck Trap

    a mosquito surveillance device; vehicle mounted funneling device that collects flying insects into a collection bag and used to determine mosquito densities; a truck with a conical trap which, when driven slowly on trapping route, collects adult mosquitoes to aid in identifying mosquito species, densities and locations. One of the many surveillance tools used to identify pest mosquito population. See CDC trap, photo


    muddiness, cloudiness or haziness of a fluid caused by individual particles such as suspended solids that are invisible to the naked eye


    abbreviation for ultra low volume cold aerosol technique, an insecticide application technique in which a sprayer produces a cloud of minute, micron range particles through a shearing action at the sprayer nozzle


    abbreviation for ultraviolet, a solar radiation having a wavelength shorter than that of visible and longer than that of x rays


    an organism capable of transmitting a pathogen from one host to another either mechanically or biologically

    Vector Potential

    a qualitative measurement of the likelihood that a particular organism can transmit a particular pathogen


    an organism which has a spinal column


    presence of virus in the blood


    having a virus in the blood


    a highly infectious microorganism, able to overcome the natural defenses of the host; marked by a rapid, severe, and destructive course

    Water Hyacinth

    Eichhornia crassipes, a wide spread, invasive exotic, floating plant that grows in large mats, associated with Mansonia mosquito larvae

    Water Lettuce

    Pistia stratiotes, a floating plant that resembles a floating open head of lettuce, it grows in large mats; associated with Mansonia mosquito larvae

    Western Equine encephalitis

    also known as WEE, a mosquito borne viral disease of humans and horses, typically west of the Mississippi river transmitted by mosquitoes of the genus Culex and Culiseta

    West Nile virus

    also known as WN, a mosquito borne disease that is caused by a virus transmitted by Culex mosquitoes; encephalitis in humans and horses, as well as mortality in certain domestic and wild birds and animals; for more information go to http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/IN117

    Yellow Fever

    an acute, often fatal, mosquito borne disease also known as Yellow Jack that is caused by a virus transmitted by mosquitoes of the genus Aedes and characterized by sudden onset, prostration, fever, relatively slow pulse, jaundice and a tendency to hemorrhage, especially from the stomach; for more information go to  http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/IN659

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