Culicoides midges

Culicoides midges belong to the order Diptera (2 winged flies), genus Culicoides. Culicoides are significant to livestock production as they are able transmit diseases such as Bluetongue to cattle and sheep.

Importance of Culicoides in the veterinary field

Vector of viruses

  • Bluetongue
  • African Horse Sickness
  • Epizootic Hemorrhagic disease
  • Akabane
  • Bovine ephemeral fever

Vector of parasites

  • Haemoproteus
  • Leucocytozoon
  • Onchocerca
  • Mansonella

Role as a virus vector

Culicoides play an important role as the vector of emerging viruses in Europe.

Especially significant are viruses of Reoviridae family, type Orbivirus:

  • Bluetongue: 24 different serotypes are known
  • African Horse Sickness
  • Epizootic Hemorrhagic disease

Culicoides and bluetongue

In Western and Northern Europe it has been determined that local Culicoides species are vectors of BTV and not species that have migrated from southern areas.

The African species Culicoides imicola has been determined as the main vector of BTV outbreaks in Africa and Southern Europe. In Western-central Europe the virus has been isolated by Real-Time-PCR technique from Culicoides obsoletus.

culi

BTV has been isolated from Culicoides obsoletus a local midge species of Northern and Western Europe.

culicoides imicola

The African species Culicoides imicola is the main vector of BTV outbreaks in Africa and Southern Europe.

bluetongue-info.com

See the Bluetongue website for more information about Culicoides and the transmission of Bluetongue.

Culicoides midges, the only identified vector of BTV.