Welcome to mosquito 101! Here you will find a few fascinating, informative, and important facts regarding mosquitoes and their importance as it regards their relationship to mankind. From little-known facts to up-close video of a mosquito taking a blood meal, you will find it all here. Without further ado, let's step into the classroom of mosquito 101!
Mosquito 101: Did you know?
- Mosquitoes must have water in which to breed, and different species require different types of water in which to breed successfully. From relatively clean water to grossly polluted water high in organic content, the breeding habitats preferred by many species are as varied as the many kinds of mosquitoes that breed in them.
- The mosquito life cycle consists of four stages; egg, larvae, pupa, and adult. In the larval stage, mosquito larvae go through four developmental periods (called instars) before reaching the pupal stage. Mosquitoes can complete their life cycle from egg to adult in as little as 4 days depending on temperature and species.
- Mosquitoes have an average life span of 2 weeks to 6 months depending on weather conditions and species.
- Only female mosquitoes seek a blood meal. They need the protein contained in the blood in order to produce their eggs.
- Female mosquitoes look for various cues when hunting down a blood meal. They are often attracted to humans by triggers such as our breath (carbon dioxide), body heat, perspiration, and skin odor. Differences in body chemistry and the chemicals in our sweat from person to person can make some people more attractive to mosquitoes than others.
- Once laid, mosquito eggs can lie dormant for up to a year, waiting to be submerged in water and the right temperature to hatch out.
- Both female and male mosquitoes need sugar in order to survive, which they get by feeding on plant nectar.
- There are 3000 species of mosquitoes worldwide, 68 of which are found in Louisiana.
- More humans deaths (over 700,000 per year) are associated with mosquitoes than with any other animal on the planet.