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Mosquitoes are infamous for spreading extremely dangerous diseases such as malaria, dengue, brain fever, cerebral malaria and filariasis. Having a mosquito infestation in close proximity to you and your family is an extremely dangerous situation and can be fatal. The primary goal is to keep homes and families safe from mosquitoes.

 

A mosquito is an insect that bites and feeds on the blood of humans and other animals. While male mosquitoes only eat nectar, females need blood meals in order to produce viable eggs that will hatch.

These pests are active from dusk until dawn, but many other mosquito species are known as day feeders and are active during the day, especially around the dusk and dawn timeframes. They find their hosts via:

·         Exhaled carbon dioxide

·         Heat

·         Scent

Diseases
In addition to being a nuisance, some types of of these pests are vectors of diseases. Common illnesses caused by infected mosquitoes include encephalitis and West Nile virus

 How to Deal with a Mosquito Problem

The use of repellents is critical to avoid mosquito-borne illnesses. Although these products reduce the chance of bites, they do not stop the growth of pest populations around houses and lawns. To manage a mosquito infestation, homeowners should consult the trained experts at Orkin and get information about how to manage their habitats and reduce the number of pests on the homeowner’s property.

Do Mosquitoes Sleep at Night?

Mosquitoes don’t sleep like we do, but people often wonder what these pests do during times of day when they aren’t active. When they aren’t flying to locate a host to feed on, mosquitoes sleep, or rather rest, and are inactive unless disturbed. Some hide during the daytime, while others, such as the Asian tiger mosquito prefers to rest up at night. Those active in the evening come out when temperatures and feeding conditions are more desirable.

What Do Mosquitoes Eat Besides Blood?

What Do Mosquito Larvae Eat?
Mosquito larvae consume algae, bacteria and other microorganisms present in the water where they hatch and develop. In the pupal stage, the pests don’t need to eat at all.

Life Stages of Aedes Mosquitoes Eggs

• Adult, female mosquitoes lay their eggs on the inner, wet walls of containers with water, above the waterline.

• Mosquitoes generally lay 100 eggs at a time.

• Eggs are very hardy; they stick to the walls of a container like glue and can survive drying out for up to 8 months— even over the winter in the southern United States.

• It only takes a very small amount of water to attract a female mosquito. Bowls, cups, fountains, tires, barrels, vases and any other container storing water makes for a great “nursery.”

 Larva

• Larvae emerge from mosquito eggs, but only after the water level rises to cover the eggs. This means that rainwater or humans adding water to containers with eggs will trigger the larvae to emerge.

• Larvae feed on microorganisms in the water. After molting three times, the larva becomes a pupa.

Pupa

•Pupae will develop until the body of the newly formed adult flying mosquito emerges from the pupal skin and leaves the water.

 Adult

 • After adult mosquitoes emerge: male mosquitoes feed on nectar from flowers and female mosquitoes feed on humans and animals for blood to produce eggs.

 • After feeding, female mosquitoes will look for water sources to lay more eggs.

• Aedes aegypti only flies a few blocks during its life.

• Unlike other mosquito species, Aedes aegypti mosquitoes prefer to bite people.

• Aedes aegypti mosquitoes prefer to live near people. They can be found inside homes, buildings, and businesses where window and door screens are not used or doors are left propped open.

Habitats

The range of habitats utilised by mosquitoes is extremely diverse. With over 3000 species worldwide, mosquitoes have evolved to utilise almost any aquatic system in most parts of the world.

Hosts

Mosquitoes will utilise almost any land-based animal large enough to provide it with a blood feed. Some species are adaptable while others are quite host specific. Hosts include: Birds Mammals Reptiles Amphibians The choice of host species for blood feeding is an important factor in disease transmission. Aedes aegypti is an urban mosquito with a preference for biting man. It’s ability to transmit dengue combined with a close association with human populations make it the most significant vector in dengue outbreaks. However with diseases like Japanese encephalitis where two host species are required for the disease cycle, a less specific mosquito species, such as Culex annulirostris is a better vector.

Behaviour

Male and female adult mosquitoes are usually present in about equal numbers following emergence. Typically the male mosquitoes reside near the breeding sites and have a shorter lifespan than females. Females may travel some distance to find a blood source. Only the female mosquitoes blood feed in order to obtain protein to produce fertile eggs. Flight habits vary considerably; Aedes aegypti, arguably the most highly domesticated mosquito, typically flies very short distances (usually less than 500 metres). In studies some individuals have flown less than 35m from the water body they emerged from in their entire lifetime, while Aedes vigilax will comfortably travel 5-10km for sugar and blood feeds and may travel upwards of 300km in jetstream wind-assisted migrations. Although a coastal species, Ae. vigilax has been found as far inland in Australia as Alice Springs following a migration dispersal. The possible flight range of Anopheline mosquitoes varies considerably, depending on the species and circumstances in search of food and shelter. Generally they will fly less than 3km, but they have been known to fly 30 kilometres in temperate climates with wind assistance. Times of activity vary from species to species. Some species are active during the day (diurnal or day-biting)and others only at night (nocturnal or night-biting) with many more active at dawn and dusk (crepuscular).

 

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