Coquillettidia perturbans (Walker, 1856)




Etymology: not stated [disturb, confuse (L)]

Coquillettidia perturbans is the only species of the genus Coquillettidia known to occur in North America. That it lacks postspiracular setaeas do all subgenus Coquillettidia and Austromansonia mosquitoeseasily differentiates it from Mansonia species and other Aedines in its range. Common in forest and marshland habitats in the eastern United States and southern Canada, Cq. perturbans has a patchier distribution in the western continental United States and Mexico.

Type locality: United States

Type depository: Natural History Museum, London, England, United Kingdom (NHMUK)

DIAGNOSTIC CHARACTERS  (Click photos to view; mouse over and click large photo to zoom in.)

ADULT (illustrated): Thorax: Postspiracular setae absent. Leg: Ta-III1 with pale median ring. Wing: Scales medium to broad, symmetrical. Abdomen: VIII-Te without chitinized hooks; IX-Te bi-lobed; abdomen blunt. Genitalia (♀): Cercus unmodified. 

LARVA (not illustrated): Head: Antenna very long, at least twice length of head; two short setae distal to seta 1-A. Terminal segments): Saddle ventrally with or without 1–2 very small setae; seta 1-VIII long and multi-branched; seta 1-X long and multi-branched; spiracular apparatus modified for piercing plants.  



Carpenter & LaCasse 1955

Dodge 1966

Darsie & Ward 2005

Becker et al. 2010

Harrison et al. 2016


Exemplar DNA sequences

Cq. perturbans  COI: JF867703–04, JF867742–43, JX259890–97, JF867810, JF867850, JF868118, JN302425




Female Cq. perturbans deposit 150–350 eggs in a single raft on or near the leaves of emergent aquatic plants, especially Calla spp. (water arum), Carex spp. (sedges), Juncus spp. (rushes), Nymphaea spp. (water lily), Phragmites spp. (reeds), Pontederia spp. (pickerelweed), Sagittaria spp. (arrowhead) and Typha spp. (cattails). Neonates submerge and pierce the submerged roots or stems of these plants with their highly sclerotized, saw-like siphons for respiration. Larval diapause—which can last up to 9 months in northern population—ends with the synchronized adult emergence in late spring.


Adult Cq. perturbans are persistent and painful biters. Although strongly anthropophilic, females feed opportunistically on a wide variety of wild and domestic birds (e.g., chickens, quail), wild mammals (e.g., armadillos, rabbits, raccoons, opossums), and domestic mammals (e.g., cattle). Females bite in the early evening, but can be enticed to bite during the day in shady spots. Adults are often captured in light traps. They are strong fliers, often found up to 5km from their immature habitats. Canadian populations are univoltine, whereas two to three overlapping generations are noted in southern populations in the United States.



Canada, Mexico, United States (continental).

Distribution map for <em>Coquillettidia perturbans</em> (Walker, 1856)



None; View other WRBU Vector Hazard Reports

Available GIS Models:

Cq_perturbans_Dornak_1 North America


IMPORTANT REFERENCES (full citations below)

Walker 1856a: 428 (F; Culex)

Dyar & Currie 1903 (L, E)

Dyar & Barrett 1918 (L)

Darsie 1951: 43 (P*)

Yamaguti & LaCasse 1951b: 31 (M*, F*, L*)

Carpenter & LaCasse 1955: 109 (M*, F*, L*; keys)

Belkin et al. 1966: 3 (type locality info)

Dodge 1966: 377 (1st instar L*; key)

Mattingly 1971g: 203 (E*)

Lee & Craig 1983 (F*; cibarium)

Darsie & Ward 2005 (F*, L*; keys, distribution)

Becker et al. 2010: 400 (F*, L*; distribution, keys)

Harrison et al. 2016 (F*, L*; keys, distribution)



syn. testaceus van der Wulp

1867: 128 (M*; Culex). Type locality: Kumlien, Wisconsin, United States (LM). References: Belkin 1968b: 11 (type information).

syn. ochropus Dyar & Knab

1907b: 100 (F; Culex). Type locality: Center Harbor, New Hampshire, United States (USNM). References: Belkin et al. 1966: 7 (type locality information).



Becker, N., Petrić, D., Zgomba, M., Boase, C., Madon, M., Dahl, C., & Kaiser, A. (2010). Mosquitoes and their control (Second ed.). Berlin Heidelberg: Springer-Verlag.

Belkin, J.N. (1968b). Mosquito studies (Diptera, Culicidae). IX. The type specimens of New World mosquitoes in European museums. Contributions of the American Entomological Institute, 3(4), 1–69.

Belkin, J.N., Schick, R.X., & Heinemann, S.J. (1966). Mosquito studies (Diptera: Culicidae). VI. Mosquitoes originally described from North America. Contributions of the American Entomological Institute, 1(6), 1–39.

Carpenter, S.J., & LaCasse, W.J. (1955). Mosquitoes of North America (North of Mexico). Berkeley, Los Angeles: University of California Press.

Darsie, R.F., Jr. (1951). Pupae of the culicine mosquitoes of the Northeastern United States (Diptera, Culicidae, Culicini). Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Agricultural Experiment Station Memoir 304.

Darsie, R.F., Jr., & Ward, R.A. (2005). Identification and geographical distribution of the mosquitoes of North America, North of Mexico. Gainesville, FL: University Press of Florida.

Dodge, H. R. (1966). Studies on mosquito larvae II. The first-stage larvae of North American Culicidae and of world Anophelinae. Canadian Entomologist, 98, 337–393.

Dyar, H.G., & Barrett, H.P. (1918). Descriptions of hitherto unknown larvae of Culex (Diptera, Culicidae). Insecutor Inscitiae Menstruus, 6, 119–120.

Dyar, H.G., & Currie, R.P. (1903). The egg and young larva of Culex perturbans Walker. Entomological Society of Washington, 6, 218–220.

Dyar, H.G., & Knab, F. (1907b). New American mosquitoes. Journal of the New York Entomological Society, 15, 100–101.

Harrison, B.A., Byrd, B.D., Sither, C.B., & Whitt, P.B. (2016). The mosquitoes of the Mid-Atlantic Region: an identification guide (Vol. 1). Madison Heights, MI: Publishing XPress.

Lee, R.M.K.W., & Craig, D.A. (1983). Cibarial sensilla and armature in mosquito adults (Diptera: Culicidae). Canadian Journal of Research, 61(3), 633–646.

Mattingly, P.F. (1971g). Mosquito Eggs XVI. Genus Mansonia (subgenus Coquillettidia Dyar) and genus Ficalbia Theobald. Mosquito Systematics Newsletter,3(4), 202–210.

van der Wulp, F.M. (1867). Eenige Noord-Americaansch Diptera. Tijdschrift voor Entomologie, 10, 125–164.  

Walker, F. (1856a). Insecta Saundersiana: or characters of undescribed insects in the collection of William Wilson Saunders, Esq., F.R.S., F.L.S., &c. Vol. I. Diptera. London: John van Voorst.

Yamaguti, S., & LaCasse, W. J. (1951b). Mosquito fauna of North America. Part III. Genera Orthopodomyia, Mansonia and Psorophora. Office of the Surgeon General, Headquarters, 8th Army, APO 343. United States. 207th Malaria Survey Detachment.



Walter Reed Biosystematics Unit (Year). Coquillettidia perturbans species page. Walter Reed Biosystematics Unit Website,, accessed on [date (e.g. 03 February 2020) when you last viewed the site].