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Mosquito Fact File - 10 Fascinating Facts about Mosquitoes

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Mosquitoes are a big killer and every month nearly 250,000 people die from mosquito borne diseases. They are a bigger killer than sharks, snakes and crocodiles, yet most people don’t know much about these deadly insects.

  1. Mosquitoes can drink up to three times their weight in blood.
    1.2 million mosquito bites would drain all the blood from an average human body.

  2. They breed in areas of stagnant water, not running water. It is best to avoid lakes and areas of still water in countries where there is a high risk of Malaria

  3. What does mosquito stand for? Originated in the 16th century, mosquito means “small fly” in Spanish
  4. Mosquitoes can smell our breath. Using the receptors on their antennae they can track the carbon dioxide in our breath when we exhale.

  5. They have just two predators: fish and dragonflies. In the US, dragonflies are sometimes released to control mosquito populations in infested towns.

  6. Aggressive “skeeters” can kill caribou. In Alaska large swarms of mosquitoes have been known to kill caribou. The caribou die through asphyxiation after inhaling them.

  7. Mosquito saliva makes us itch. Mosquitoes release a pain-killing saliva when they suck our blood. Most people react to this saliva and the reaction leads to itchy, swollen bites.

  8. Only female mosquitoes bite. Male mosquitoes are vegetarian, whereas the females often require a blood meal before they can lay eggs.

  9. The “Elephant” mosquito is the largest mosquito in the world. The Toxorhynchites speciousus mosquito is one and a half inches long and the adults of this species only eat plant matter. The larvae however are predatory and prey on other mosquito larvae.

  10. Mosquitoes can’t transmit HIV. They digest the virus that causes AIDS in their stomach, therefore it is broken down and not passed on to humans when they bite. 
Written by Carolyn


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