Mosquito fauna on the Cape Verde Islands (West Africa): an update on species distribution and a new finding.
To evaluate the risk of transmission of vector-borne diseases, regular updates of the geographic distribution of insect vectors are required. In the archipelago of Cape Verde, nine mosquito species have been reported. Of these, four are major vectors of diseases that have been present in the archipelago: yellow fever, lymphatic filariasis, malaria and, currently, an outbreak of dengue. In order to assess variation in mosquito biodiversity, we have carried out an update on the distribution of the mosquito species in Cape Verde, based on an enquiry of 26 unpublished technical reports (1983-2006) and on the results of an entomological survey carried out in 2007. Overall, there seems to be a general trend for an expansion of biological diversity in the islands. Mosquito species richness was negatively correlated with the distance of the islands from the mainland but not with the size of the islands. Human- and/or sporadic climatic-mediated events of dispersal may have contributed to a homogenization of species richness regardless of island size but other ecological factors may also have affected the mosquito biogeography in the archipelago. An additional species, Culex perexiguus, was collected for the first time in the archipelago during the 2007 survey.