Mosquito<<<< Back to insects
- Kingdom: Animalia
- Phylum: Chordata
- Class: Insecta
- Order: Diptera
- Suborder: Nematocera
- Infraorder: Culicomorpha
- SuperFamily: Culicoidea
- Family: Culicidae
- Conservation status: Least concern
- Length: 1.5 cm (0.6 inch)
- Lifespan: 10 days
- Reproduction: 100 - 200 Eggs
The mosquito lives in marshes mainly in Africa, South America and South Asia. Mosquitoes can be met anywhere in the world, especially in humid areas. Within the species, there is a strong "discrimination".
While males are content to feed on plant nectar and water and to dwadle, the females need blood to procure proteins, essential to the reproductive apparatus maturation and egg production. They are equipped with a complex sensory system to detect the 'blood donor' and are particularly attracted to heat, moisture, instense colors and perfumes. The female mosquito lands on skin and stings using a small tube equipped with small teeth through which it sucks blood.
Because the sting does not reach nerve endings, the victim doesn't feel pain and the person, often, doest not even realize it is stung, until later, when the ithcing occurs. After it feeds on blood like a little vampire, the female mosquito lays its eggs. The sting can transmit infectious diseases, some very serious, such as malaria, yellow fever and various forms of encephalitis. Experts say the HIV virus can't be transmitted.
The body consists of head, thorax and abdomen. It has two wings and the mouthparts are specialized for sucking and stinging. They present an external chitin skeleton. The head consists of two compound eyes, two articulated antennae and a mouth made of chitinous parts. On the back side of the thorax the wings are attached, and on the ventral side three pairs of articulated legs. The abdomen consists of eight segments, on each segment on the ventral side, there is a pair of respiratory orifices called Sigmas. Breathing is trachean.
Clidren are ideal targets for mosquitoes: they have thin skin, superficial blood vessels, easily penetrated even in deep sleep. The child can not stand the itch, so he will scratch more than an adult, causing small wound that favor infection with bacteria normally found on the skin. Through stinging, the mosquitoes can inoculate the human with pathogens that cause diseases like malaria, yellow fever and others, especially in tropical and subtropical geographic areas where such diseases are spread. For the overly sensitive persons, especially if the bites are numerous, the affected areas will swell and the malaise will get generalized (low blood count, rashes). Then you must consult your doctor.
Expose as little skin as you can, especially after dusk; wear white clothes, made of woven or natural fibers. Avoid alcohol-based perfumes, deodorants, hair spray: their odors attracts insects. Make sure the home, garden or on the balcony there are no humid areas. For optimum and long-lasting protection, doctors recommend using repellent products, which applied on skin keep the insects away. These are not insecticides and have a pleasant smell. For example, The Autan Family products, lotion, emulsion and stick, launched by Johnson Wax, suitable for any skin type, even for children or people with sensitive skin.
Some people have more severe reactions to mosquito bites than most. For many of us, a mosquito bite means local itching and a small bulge that mitigates within hours. But there is also the possibility of serious allergic reactions, such as Skeeter syndrome, which makes the swelling to become very large, about the size of a plum, and very painful. The allergy is caused by compounds found in mosquito saliva. The effects are more serious in the long run, but on the spot the reaction is more than unpleasant.
Mosquitoes breed in swamps, lakes or anywhere where there's stagnant water. In just seven days, a mosquito reaches adulthood, and the female survives up to three weeks in the summer and several months in the winter, to lay the eggs in the spring. To prevent a mosquito attack, you should periodically refresh water containers, mow the grass because they like to hide in it. We also need to choose places to spend time outdoors that benefit from a slight breeze or current, because mosquitoes can not fly when the wind blows.
Did you know that:
Mosquitoes have teeth.
Mosquitoes are attracted to people who just ate bananas?
Mosquitoes can consume blood of twice their weight. Mosquitoes have a very fast digestion: they quickly eliminate waste, so they can flly away immediately. And this feature is common to all types of mosquitoes.
Only female mosquitoes bite. They need blood to perpetuate the species and have the necessary force to lay their eggs.
Each species has its own way of feeding. Some species do not feed on blood, and other species do not feed on human blood.
There are species that feed only at night, others only during the day.