Mosquitoes are pretty annoying creatures because not only they suck our blood and leave red, itchy marks all over our bodies, but they also produce very annoying sound that warns us that they are near and ready to attack. But despite these things they actually are pretty interesting insects, that’s why I decided to write this article to inform you a little bit more about mosquitoes and maybe help understand them better to fight them better.
1. Did you know that there are probably about 3,000 different mosquito species on earth? Thanks to evolution mosquitoes have adapted to many different living conditions so now some type of mosquito species can be found from arctic tundra to even equator regions. This – evolution and adaption to different climates – is also one of the main reasons why one and the same method of mosquito repelling and killing won’t work equally well on all mosquitoes. So you really need to research the type of mosquitoes that can be found in your area to know the best way to combat them.
2. We all know that mosquitoes bite us and suck our blood and a lot of people know that only female mosquitoes do this. But did you know that they don’t feed on our blood. Actually mosquito females suck our blood because they need it to be able to develop their eggs and later produce new mosquitoes. Mosquitoes feed on mainly flower nectar, juices and different organic particulates. So next time a mosquito stings you, you will know that they do it to continue their species.
3. One of best known disease to be carried by mosquitoes is malaria, because it is one of the main diseases that have killed so many people. But actually mosquitoes are the carriers of many other quite dangerous diseases. For example some mosquito species carry illnesses like yellow fever and dengue fever, some also carry encephalitis much like ticks do, and many mosquitoes carry hart worms that are dangerous to cats and dogs.
4. Surprisingly mosquitoes have very poor eye-sight. They can see only about 30 feet (10 meters) ahead of them and even then they aren’t good at distinguishing shapes. What lets them know that there is a blood source near is their thermal receptors located on the tip of their antennae. These work at only about 10 feet (3m) from objects but the distance increases in more humid environments. No wonder mosquitoes attack more on humid days or near water, they simply see you better and can attack you more efficiently.
5. Mosquitoes are very fertile insects. One mosquito female on average lays from 100 to 300 eggs at a time and are able to do it many times in their short lifespan (mosquito females live from 3 up to 100 days). And their favorite place to breed is standing water. So by eliminating all standing water from your property you might reduce mosquito breeding. And the next time you squash a mosquito that just bit you or is about to bite you, don’t feel bad because you are doing everyone a favor by eliminating at least one female mosquito so that there is one less mosquito to create thousand more mosquitoes.
6. There are many different myths out there that people say what either attracts or repels mosquitoes. The truth is that mosquitoes mainly are attracted to carbon dioxide, body odor and body heat, which is why movements might also attract mosquitoes, because our bodies produce more heat when we are moving around. So by eating a banana you won’t be more attractive to mosquitoes, but wearing a perfume though will increase your scent and mosquitoes will be more attracted to you. Studies have shown that also people drinking beer are more attractive to mosquitoes and they also like the scent of cheese. But scents such as garlic won’t repel mosquitoes and using vitamin B12 won’t help your chances of repelling mosquitoes too. So next time you plan to spend time outside in mosquito season, don’t wear a perfume, try to move as less as possible and don’t drink beer. This way you will be as attractive to mosquitoes as any other person and won’t attract them more.