25 Facts About Mosquitoes You Might Not Know

Do you live near a pond? You probably do. And that pond has something we all dread…mosquitoes! Well, some ponds don’t have them, but a lot of them do. These stinging little insects live near lakes and ponds all over the world and have even been classified as the most dangerous animal on our planet. So what do you know about them? These are 25 Facts About Mosquitoes You Might Not Know!

25

Only female mosquitoes bite. Why? Because they need the protein found in blood to help their eggs develop.

mosquitoSource: smithsonianmag.com
24

Worldwide, there are about 3,500 species of mosquito. 175 are found in the US.

mosquitoSource: smithsonianmag.com
23

One of those (Anopheles) is a malaria carrier, while three others are known to spread encephalitis.

mosquitoSource: scientificamerican.com
22

West Virginia has the fewest species of mosquito. The mountainous state has only 26 species in total.

west virginiaSource: nationalgeographic.com
21

Texas has the most with 85, and Florida is a close second with 80.

marshSource: smithsonianmag.com
20

Mosquito is Spanish for "little fly."

mosquitoSource: nationalgeographic.com
19

In parts of Africa and Oceania (Australia and New Zealand), mosquitos are known as Mozzies.

opera houseSource: smithsonianmag.com
18

Mosquitos don't have teeth. They mostly just feed on plant nectar and fruit.

berriesSource: smithsonianmag.com
17

The female sucks blood with a long and serrated mouthpart called a proboscis.

mosquitoSource: smithsonianmag.com
16

A mosquito can drink nearly 3 times its weight in blood! Don't start panicking though. You would have to be bitten over 1 million times to lose all of your blood.

bloodSource: scientificamerican.com; smithsonianmag.com
15

While it's true that mosquitoes spread several serious diseases and viruses, one thing they can't transmit is HIV. Not only does the virus not duplicate in the mosquito's system, but their stomach breaks the virus down.

HIV infected t cellSource: megacatch.com
14

Females lay up to 300 eggs at a time, in clusters that float on the surface of stagnant water.

pondSource: smithsonianmag.com
13

The first 10 days of a mosquito's life are spent in water.

waterSource: smithsonianmag.com
12

Since they are cold blooded, mosquitoes require warm temperatures. If the mercury falls too far, they'll either go into hibernation or die.

frozenSource: nationalgeographic.com
11

Once they are fully grown, males only live about 10 days. Females lives about six to eight weeks (unless they hibernate, then they can live up to 6 months).

mosquitosSource: nationalgeographic.com
10

Females can beat their wings up to 500 times per second! Males locate females by the sound that their wings generate.

mosquitoSource: nationalgeographic.com
9

Most mosquitoes never travel more than a couple miles. In fact, the majority will stay within several hundred feet of where they were hatched. Only a few salt marsh species will travel up to 40 miles (64 km).

lakeSource: scientificamerican.com
8

Mosquitoes will feed on more than just humans. Some species will also prey on reptiles and amphibians.

chameleon green
7

With regards to height, most mosquitos fly below 25 feet (7.6 meters). Some, however, have been found in the Himalayas at more than 8,000 feet (2,438 meters)!

himalayasSource: scientificamerican.com
6

Mosquitoes can detect humans by the carbon dioxide that we exhale. They are also attracted to sweat, perfume, and certain bacteria.

sweatSource: smithsonianmag.com
5

Mosquitoes have been around since the Jurassic period. That's about 210 million years!

dinosaurSource: smithsonianmag.com
4

Mosquitoes actually inject their saliva while they are sucking. Their saliva serves as a mild painkiller and anticoagulant that keeps their prey from noticing them and keeps the blood flowing.

mosquitoSource: smithsonianmag.com
3

The reason people get bumps from mosquito bites is that most of us are slightly allergic to their saliva.

allergySource: smithsonianmag.com
2

Mosquitoes are often considered the deadliest animal in the world. Due to infecting people with malaria, they kill over 1 million people annually.

mosquitoSource: smithsonianmag.com
1

Alexander the Great is thought to have died of malaria in 323 BC because of a mosquito bite.

alexander the greatSource: nationalgeographic.com


Featured Image: pixabay (public domain), 25-16. pixabay (public domain), 15. NIAID via flickr, CC BY 2.0, 14-1. pixabay (public domain)

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