The Truth About Mosquitoes: Why They’re More Than Just a Nuisance
They’re the insects that buzz around your head on a summer night, leaving itchy welts in their wake. Other than being a nuisance and annoying insect in the animal world, mosquitoes are also considered the deadliest and most dangerous animal in the world. They are known for carrying harmful viruses and diseases that can be very dangerous to humans.
Why Are Mosquitoes Dangerous?
Mosquitoes can leave much more than unpleasant red spots to remember their visit when they bite you. They are the deadliest insect in the world because of their ability to transfer harmful blood-borne viruses and fungi from victim to victim.
These insects are vectors for several diseases, including malaria, yellow fever, and the West Nile virus. Each year, these diseases kill millions of people around the world. In addition to being deadly, mosquitoes are also incredibly widespread.
Moreover, they can be found on every continent except Antarctica, and their populations are only increasing as the climate warms. As a result, mosquitoes pose a serious threat to public health.
Common Diseases that Mosquitoes Carry
Male mosquitoes don’t bite humans, but females require blood to breed. When a female mosquito bites, she sucks the blood and stores it inside her body. If her blood becomes infected, she transforms into a disease-carrying insect. She will start spreading sickness to a new victim through her saliva. When these viruses are acquired, they can cause severe fever-like symptoms, birth disorders, and even death.
Here are some common diseases and viruses that mosquitoes can spread:
- Zika virus
- West Nile virus
- Yellow Fever
How To Avoid Mosquito Bites?
Given how harmful these tiny animals can be, here is some advice on avoiding mosquito bites and preventing the illness they can cause.
Vaccines must be up-to-date for your safety and health if you plan to travel abroad. Your doctor might recommend vaccines to protect you against malaria or yellow fever. Other times, they may be required before entering certain countries where protection from mosquito-borne illness is crucial, like Africa.
A mosquito repellent is a great way to protect yourself and your family from mosquitoes. Read the warning label, use the product as indicated, and reapply the repellent as needed. You must note that you should not apply the repellent to broken or irritated skin.
Additionally, apply repellent over clothing immediately after putting on any additional lotions, sunscreens, or other products. Read the instructions and only use the right insect repellent on children of the proper age.
You could also use mosquito-repelling plants, like citronella, in your garden. Their scent is fantastic for humans but not so much for mosquitoes.
Wear Proper Clothing
If you know you’re going to a place with many mosquitoes, wear clothes that cover your entire body and are composed of thick, long-lasting material. Also, if you have children, cover their exposed areas and place a mosquito net across cribs, playpens, and strollers to create a physical barrier of protection.
Check your Home Surroundings
To stop mosquitoes from biting you, you should ensure your home, inside and outside, is clean and no standing water is left. Stagnant water is a mosquito’s favourite breeding place. They lay their eggs in buckets, trash cans, tires, rain gutters, toys, plant trays, or even small places like bottle caps. As long as there is little water, they can breed in it.
Check your home regularly and dry or dispose of anything that gathers water. Moreover, make sure your home is secured. Always keep windows and doors closed to prevent mosquitoes from entering your home. You can also install window and door screens.
6 Facts about Mosquitoes
Here are some facts that could help you protect your family and assist you in avoiding them:
1. Only the Female Mosquitoes Bite
Male and female mosquitoes both have a taste for nectar, but only females bite humans to produce eggs. The protein required by baby mosquitoes comes from blood meals taken by their parents.
2. They Grow Up Fast
Mosquitoes lay about 100 eggs at a time, and they mature quickly. The life cycle of a mosquito, from egg to adult, only takes 7-10 days.
3. They Can Breed in Tiny Amounts of Water
Mosquitoes only need a small amount of water to lay their eggs, so they often lay their eggs in still or stagnant water. To prevent mosquitoes from reproducing and protect your family from the diseases that mosquitoes can carry, check your home surroundings and dispose of standing waters.
4. They Have Great Appetites
A blood meal’s size is determined by the species and size of the mosquito. Female mosquitoes can fill their whole body weight with blood during a meal.
5. Mosquitoes Favor to Bite Some People Over Others
If you continually get bit while others around you don’t, mosquitoes could prefer certain people’s body chemistry. They are drawn to a mixture of body heat, odour, the carbon dioxide released by humans and animals when they breathe, and lactic acid, an ingredient in sweat. These biting bugs use senses and vision to locate their target and may see their next victim from 50 meters away.
Other factors that could attract mosquitoes are:
- Your blood type
- What you drink
- How much you move
- What you wear
6. More Active When it is a Full Moon
A full moon can boost mosquito behaviour by 500%. It is because mosquitos use visual signals to find their next meal, which is simpler to achieve when the moon is full.
So, what can be done to combat this global threat? Unfortunately, there is no simple solution. Mosquito management is a never-ending battle that requires continual attention. The best way to combat mosquitoes is to prevent them from breeding in the first place. It means eliminating standing water where they lay their eggs and using insecticides to kill them before they have a chance to bite.
Knockout mosquito offers mosquito control services and a free evaluation if you are tired of getting bit by mosquitoes or flying around your yard or garden. If you have more concerns or questions, don’t hesitate to contact them.