Data and Analysis for: Staphylococcus microbes in the bovine skin microbiome attract blood-feeding stable flies

Published: 19 June 2023| Version 1 | DOI: 10.17632/rwdt4dbpzm.1
, Emerson Mohr,


This dataset is supplementary to the manuscript “Staphylococcus microbes in the bovine skin microbiome attract blood-feeding stable flies.” Prior to opening any subfolders, use the .Rproj file titled "Host cue paper data publication.Rproj" to open RStudio and run all the subsequent .R files. Included in this dataset are: 1) raw data for numbers of flies attracted to each set of microbes and various combinations therein against respective controls, 2) raw data for numbers of fly landings on visual targets paired with microbes against respective controls, 3) raw data for numbers of flies attracted to various doses of ammonia or synthetic microbial semiochemicals against respective controls, 4) the Rcode used to convert the count data into proportions which were then compared for each experiment, and in some cases, across experiments, as well as to generate figures 2-8 in the text, and 5) the resulting figures 2-8. The “Read me.txt” and “Read me.doc” files in each subfolder contain more detailed information for each set of experiments. Also included in this dataset is the list of microbes identified via either sequencing or MALDI-TOF MS, as well as genetic sequences where applicable. Note: please refer to the "Read me.txt" file in the main folder for full descriptions of each subfolder. “As previously demonstrated, the human skin microbiome contributes to the attraction of mosquitoes to human hosts. Here, we tested the hypothesis that microbes in the bovine skin microbiome affect the attraction of blood-feeding stable flies to their bovine hosts. Microbes were collected from a calf and adult cow, and morphologically distinct microbes growing on different types of agar were isolated and identified by mass spectrometry and genetic sequencing. Separate groups of (i) four Staphylococcus congeners (S. chromogenes, S. sciuri, S. simulans, S. succinus) and (ii) three bacterial heterogeners (Glutamicibacter protophormiae, Corynebacterium stationis, Wautersiella sp.) grown on agar, each attracted stable flies in still-air olfactometers, as did each of the four Staphylococcus congeners singly. The four Staphylococcus microbes grown on agar also attracted stable flies in a room setting. In a large greenhouse compartment with paired black barrels as visual (surrogate host) stimuli, the treatment barrel baited with S. sciuri grown on agar induced significantly more alighting responses by flies than the control barrel baited with sterile agar. The same treatment effect could not be demonstrated on a cattle farm, possibly because of chemically and visually complex surroundings. Ammonia emitted by Staphylococcus microbes is one of the underlying mechanisms that mediate the attraction of stable flies to Staphylococcus, but synthetic blends of microbe odorants did not enhance the attractiveness of ammonia, possibly due to missing components. Optimal attraction of stable flies to bovine microbes is likely contingent upon the integration of multimodal host cues.”



Simon Fraser University


Microbiology, Entomology, Animal Behavior, Chemical Ecology, Diptera, Insect Pest Management, Host Recognition, Blood Feeding Arthropods, Animal Pest



Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada