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Mosquito Facts: What you want to know

Mosquitoes are one of the most common pests around the world; their bites are not only itchy and annoying, but can also be dangerous. Mosquitoes are known to carry diseases and can cause serious allergic reactions in some individuals. In order to fight this warm weather bug, scientists have studied the tiny insects very closely for years. Being well-aware of mosquito facts will give you better protection against their bites and the associated potential health risks.

Did you know that:

  • Mosquito FactsOnly female mosquitoes bite and draw blood; the males feed on nectar and plant juices.
  • Mosquitoes are drawn to the carbon monoxide in your breath; they can detect it from afar.
  • In order to bite, mosquitoes choose their landing location based on the smell, temperature and sight of a particular spot on your skin.
  • You can be attractive or unattractive to mosquitoes, depending on your natural odor and skin type, as well as the humidity level in the air surrounding you.
  • Mosquito-borne diseases kill more people around the world than any other single cause.
  • Malaria is the most commonly known mosquito-borne disease, although numerous types of encephalitis are transmitted by mosquitoes in North America.
  • Mosquitoes transmit heartworm disease between cats and dogs.
  • Male mosquitoes generally live 10 to 20 days; the female‘s life span ranges from 3 days to 100 days.
  • During its life, a female mosquito can lay between 1,000 and 3,000 eggs, which mature into full grown adults in less than one week.
  • Mosquitoes breed in standing water.
  • There is a wide variety of mosquito repellants, some dealing with the breeding grounds and surrounding air, while others address particular skin odors and taste.
  • Certain repellant systems lure insects away from humans and pets and destroy them.

Some Lesser Known Mosquito Facts:

  • Females do not actually feed on blood; they require the substance for healthy egg development.
  • Mosquitoes feed on flower nectar and juices from rotting organic materials such as compost.
  • A mosquito bite itches because, as the female bites, an irritating chemical is released into your skin to prevent your blood from clotting, but it also reduces the sting as well.
  • The female mosquito will probe your skin looking for the easiest spot of entry before piercing through to a capillary blood vessel.
  • Most species of mosquitoes cannot fly far from where they are born; however, some breed inside or near airplanes and can end up traveling long distances.
  • Airlines commonly spray for mosquitoes and other pests in order to prevent the various species from spreading.
  • Mosquitoes have poor eyesight and cannot distinguish their target until they are within 30 feet of them.
  • Once a mosquito has come within 10 feet of your skin, it uses thermal receptors to sense the blood flowing underneath.
  • There are millions of mosquitoes living in the Arctic Circle.

Knowing the facts of the mosquito world is helpful as we continue to search for ways to successfully protect ourselves against their bite, and the potential hazards of air-borne diseases.

 


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