Aedes trivittatus (Coquillett, 1902)




Etymology: carrying three bands, ribbons, vittae (L); refers to “Near triseriatus, but with three vittae of blackish scales on the mesonotum”

Aedes trivittatus is one of four floodwater species that make up the Trivittatus Subgroup of the Scapularis Group, which also includes Ae. atactavittatus Arnell, Ae. angustivittatus Dyar & Knab and Ae. meprai Martinez & Prosen. Of these, Ae. trivitattatus and Ae. angustivittatus are the only two implicated in pathogen transmission and there are indications that these taxa may hybridize in the southern part of Aedes trivittatus’ distribution.

Type locality: Chester, New Jersey, United States

Type depository: U.S. National Museum, Washington, D.C., United States (USNM)

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

ADULT (illustrated): Head: Thorax: Scutum with dorsocentral line of white or occasionally yellowish-white scales broadened at and beyond supraalar area; scutal scales narrow and curved; Lower mesepimeral setae absent. Legs: All tarsi without pale rings.

LARVA (not illustrated): Head: Setae 5,6-C single. Abdominal segments: Seta 6-I,II double (rarely single); seta 6-III–VI single (rarely double); seta 13-III usually single, subequal in length to seta 13-IV,V; thoracic and abdominal integument with numerous conspicuous spicules. Terminal segments: Spinules of comb scales subequal, with longer moderately-differentiated median spinule; pecten ends at, or near, level of seta 1-S. (As for other members of the Scapularis Group, the larval thoracic and abdominal integument of Ae. trivittatus is spiculose, giving the larvae a mottled appearance.)



Carpenter & LaCasse 1955

Ross & Horsfall 1965

Dodge 1966

Darsie & Ward 2005

Harrison et al. 2016


Exemplar DNA sequences

Ae. trivittatus  COI: JX259689-97, KR681661




Females deposit their eggs in fully shaded sites in the grassy margins of freshwater ponds, streams, or temporary pools in fall, and the species overwinters as eggs. In warmer months, Ae. trivittatus immatures are common in flooded meadows and woodland pools. Their life cycle development is quick (˜8 days).


Adult Ae. trivittatus are long-lived, with females surviving 5–6 weeks and producing several batches of eggs (1–100 eggs per batch, mean = 55). Thus, after heavy rains, populations can quickly rise and Ae. trivittatus becomes a troublesome pest of humans, especially in forested areas or in the ecotone between woods and open fields. Although more active at dusk, the species is active day and night, and will feed even in bright sunshine. Aedes trivittatus prefers to feed on cottontail rabbits, with other occasional hosts including man, birds, raccoons and cattle, and more rarely horses, squirrels, opossums, cats, amphibians and reptiles.



Canada, Honduras, Mexico, Panama, United States (continental), Venezuela.

Distribution map for <em>Aedes trivittatus</em> (Coquillett, 1902)



None; View other WRBU Vector Hazard Reports

Available GIS Models

Ae_trivittatus_Dornak_1 North America


IMPORTANT REFERENCES (full citations below)

Coquillett 1902b: 193 (F; as Culex)

Ross 1947: 75 (M*, F*, L*)

Abdel-Malek 1948b: 51 & 1948: 951 (bionomics) & 1949: 19 (P*, L*, E*)

Abdel-Malek 1949 (E*)

Breland 1951: 369 (L*)

Darsie 1951: 21 (P*)

Yamaguti & LaCasse 1951d: 222 (M*, F*, L*)

Carpenter & LaCasse 1955: 249 (M*, F*, L*; keys)

Horsfall & Craig 1956: 372 (E*)

Craig 1956 (E*)

Stone & Knight 1956a: 226 (type information)

Price 1960: 558 (1st instar L*)

Ross & Horsfall 1965 (M*, F*, L*, E*; keys)

Dodge 1966: 358 (1st instar L*; key)

Horsfall et al. 1970: 1711 (E*)

Arnell 1976: 35 (M*, F*, P*, L*)

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

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



syn. inconspicuus Grossbeck

1904b: 332 (M, F; Culex). Type locality: Garret Mountains, Paterson, New Jersey, United States (USNM). References: Stone & Knight 1956a: 219 (type information, lectotype designation).






Abdel-Malek, A. (1948b). The biology of Aedes trivittatus. Journal of Economic Entomology, 41(6), 951–954.

Abdel-Malek, A. (1949). A study of the morphology of the immature stages of Aedes trivittatus (Coquillett) (Diptera: Culicidae). Annals of the Entomological Society of America, 42(1), 19–37.

Arnell, J. H. (1976). Mosquito studies (Diptera, Culicidae). XXXII. A revision of the scapularis group of Aedes (Ochlerotatus). Contributions of the American Entomological Institute, 13(3).

Breland, O.P. (1951). The immature stages of Aedes infirmatus Dyar and Knab with notes on related species (Diptera: Culicidae). Annals of the Entomological Society of America, 44, 362–371.

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

Coquillett, D.W. (1902b). New forms of Culicidae from North America. Journal of the New York Entomological Society, 10, 191–194.

Craig Jr., G.B. (1956). Classification of eggs of Nearctic Aedinae mosquitoes (Diptera: Culicidae). Dissertation Abstract (5).

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.

Grossbeck, J.A. (1904b). Description of two new species of Culex. Entomological News, 15, 332–333.

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.

Horsfall, W.R., & Craig, G.B. Jr. (1956). Eggs of floodwater mosquitoes IV. Species of Aedes common in Illinois. (Diptera: Culicidae). Annals of the Entomological Society of America, 49(4), 368–374.

Horsfall, W.R., Voorhees, F.R., & Cupp, E.W. (1970). Eggs of floodwater mosquitoes. XIII. Chorionic sculpturing. Annals of the Entomological Society of America, 63, 1709–1716.

Price, R.D. (1960). Identification of first-instar aedine mosquito larvae of Minnesota (Diptera: Culicidae). Canadian Entomologist, 92, 544–560.

Ross, H.H., & Horsfall, W.R. (1965). A synopsis of the mosquitoes of Illinois (Diptera, Culicidae). Illinois Natural History Survey Biological Notes, 52, 1–50.

Stone, A., & Knight, K.L. (1956a). Type specimens of mosquitoes in the United States National Museum. II. The genus Aedes (Diptera, Culicidae). Journal of the Washington Academy of Sciences, 46(7), 213–228.

Yamaguti, S., & LaCasse, W.J. (1951d). Mosquito fauna of North America Part V – Genus Aedes. Office of the Surgeon, Headquarters, 8th Army, APO 343. United States. Office of the Surgeon-General. 207th Malaria Survey Detachment.



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