Two new phlebotomine sandflies (Diptera: Psychodidae) from the forest edge in Madagascar: the anthropophilic Phlebotomus artemievi sp. nov. and Sergentomyia maroantsetra ensis sp. nov

Parasitol Res. 2020 Apr;119(4):1177-1199. doi: 10.1007/s00436-020-06639-x. Epub 2020 Apr 3.


A few data are related to the anthropophily of Malagasy Phlebotomine sandflies. Prior studies focussed mainly to inventories and description of new species. Our goal was to emphasize the anthropophily of Malagasy Phlebotomine sandflies. We worked in the Makira region, using two simultaneous methods: human landing catches (HLC) and CDC light traps. We collected sandflies in three rural communities adjacent to the Makira Natural Park. In each community, three different biotopes were sampled: within community settlements; at the edge of forest, typically in agricultural land; and within the forest. We collected 61 sandflies belonging to two new species presently described: Phlebotomus artemievi sp. nov. and Sergentomyia maroantsetraensis sp. nov. These sandflies were caught exclusively in the forest edge biotope. None were captured within communities or within forests. HLC provided 97% of the collected sandflies, corresponding to a human-biting rate of 15 females per human per night. CDC provided only two females. Ph. artemievi sp. nov. was predominantly captured by HLC and appears to be highly anthropophilic. Here, we update the behavioural ecology of sandflies and describe two new species. Further research is required to understand their vector competence and their ability to transmit arboviruses and other pathogens such as Leishmania.

Keywords: Anthropophily; Disease ecology; Madaphlebotomus; Morphological and molecular taxonomy; Phlebotomine sandflies; Phlebotomus artemievi sp. nov.; Sergentomyia maroantsetraensis sp. nov.; Vector ecology.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Disease Vectors
  • Ecosystem
  • Female
  • Forests*
  • Madagascar
  • Male
  • Phlebotomus* / classification
  • Psychodidae* / classification