The mosquitoes are members of a family of flies. Even though a few species are harmless or even useful to humanity, most mosquitoes are considered a nuisance since they suck blood from vertebrates, many of them attacking humans. When feeding on blood, some species of mosquitoes can transmit some of the most harmful human and livestock diseases. Some say mosquitoes are the most dangerous animals on earth.
The word mosquito is from the Spanish and Portuguese word for “little fly”. Observers seldom realize that there are important differences between the members of the respective families. Particularly, the females of many species of mosquitoes are blood-sucking pests and dangerous carriers of diseases, whereas those who are very similar looking to these are not bloodsuckers. Many of those who do suck blood do not even transmit diseases. In the bloodsucking species, it is only the females who suck blood.
Over 3,500 species of mosquitoes are known throughout various parts of the world. Some mosquitoes that bite humans are carriers of a number of infectious diseases which affect millions of people each year. Others do not bite humans, but are carriers for animal diseases. Several scientists have said that complete extinction of mosquitoes would not have serious ecological consequences, but however, this cannot be sustained. Some species are actually beneficial predators of other mosquitoes.
In most species, the eggs are laid in standing water, near the water’s edge, or are attached to aquatic plants. Mosquitoes that breed and feed mainly in remote wetlands may well remain uninfected and seldom encounter humans to infect in turn. Mosquitoes are very widespread and occur in all regions of the world, except forAntarctica. They are active for the entire year in warm and humid tropical regions, but hibernate over the winter in temperate regions.
While the female mosquito can live up to 100 days, the male 20 days, and can lay up to 3,000 offspring during her lifespan, I’m pretty sure we can all agree that this is more than enough to create misery. Mosquito sprays and foggers are arguably the most ineffective and environmentally harmful thing to do. They are effective in keeping the mosquitoes away for only two to four hours and kill every other insect, then, after that time is up, the mosquitoes come back even stronger due to the fact that they can build up immunity to pesticides. Citronella candles repel mosquitoes, but you have to stay in the smoky plume to be protected. What’s a human to do?!
Ashleigh Argo, Office Assistant of Arning Lawns