Have you ever been bitten by a mosquito? Most people have and they’ll tell you, it’s annoying. The constant scratching and reddish-pink bumps aren’t flattering on anyone. And have you ever experienced a bite on the foot? There truly is nothing more irritating than a mosquito bite on your toe.
But, Mother Nature has her purpose for all animals on Earth. With all the scientific findings on the Zika virus, the purpose of mosquitoes has been a debated topic. Mosquitoes serve as prey for many insects, spiders, lizards and salamanders. So, if we were to rid the world of mosquitoes, we could lose some of the creatures we love so dearly.
Mosquitoes can be found on every continent besides Antarctica, so they affect people’s lives daily. We’ve compiled some of the most interesting facts about mosquitoes to expand your knowledge on them.
1. Mosquitoes don’t like wind.
Because mosquitoes only weigh 2.5 milligrams, it doesn’t take much to blow them away. If you want to repel mosquitoes, have a fan continuously blowing beside you and you’ll likely notice how no mosquitoes will be on you. Fans also reduce body heat and sweat, which are a couple factors that attract them to humans.
2. Mosquitoes are the deadliest animals on Earth.
Yep, you heard that right. Mosquitoes were responsible for roughly 214 million malaria cases worldwide and about 438,000 malaria deaths in 2015. An estimated 3.2 billion people are at-risk for malaria around the world. Malaria is caused by the Plasmodium parasite in Anopheles mosquitoes. Mosquitoes also transmit dengue, Japanese encephalitis, yellow fever and the infamous Zika virus.
3. Drinking beer makes you more attractive to mosquitoes.
If mosquitoes and humans have anything in common, it’s that they both like beer. A study from the IRD Research Center in France published an online journal which found that insects, like mosquitoes, are 15% more likely to bite people who have drank a pint of beer. Researchers believe it could be two things. One, drinking beer changes our breathing patterns and odor. And, after having a few beers, you may be less likely to notice if mosquitoes are biting you, making you less susceptible to swatting them away.
4. Mosquitoes have poor eyesight.
They have two spheres on both sides of their head which contain hundreds of eyes. Up close, it looks mesh-like. Because of this design, their vision becomes heavily distorted so they must rely on chemical and thermal receptors.
Mosquitoes have sensitive thermal receptors on the tip of their antennae, which allows them to detect heat-sources near them, like birds or mammals. Mosquitoes also have chemical sensors, which sense carbon dioxide and lactic acid up to 100 feet away. Mammals and birds release these gases when they breathe. Chemicals in sweat also attract mosquitoes, so people who don’t sweat as much tend to not get bit as much as those who do sweat a lot.
5. There are more than 3,500 species of mosquitoes in the world.
It’s estimated that mosquitoes have been on Earth for more than 100 million years so it isn’t hard to imagine how this many species of mosquitoes came to be. Anopheles mosquitoes are the only species known to carry malaria. Culex mosquitoes carry the West Nile virus and Japanese encephalitis and Aedes mosquitoes carry yellow fever, dengue and encephalitis as well.
Mosquito Control Services
Mosquitoes are fascinating but dangerous creatures. There are measures you can take to protect your property from mosquitoes but a professional pest control service is the most effective way to rid your property of a mosquito infestation.