Mosquitos have been the pests of mankind for over 30 million years. They use a variety of methods to hone in on us humans and other mammals. They have chemical sensors, particularly for carbon dioxide and lactic acid, which mammals give off. They are also able to use visual cues. If an animal contrasts with its environment, they use that as a signal that potential food is near. Like missiles, they can also detect heat, which leads them to find mammals to latch on to.
There are a wide variety of mosquitos. It has been estimated that well over 2000 mosquito types exist in the world. However, only certain types are predominant, depending on your area.
Mosquitos, for the most part, are just annoying. However, they can carry diseases as well. Among the diseases they spread are malaria, West Nile, and equine encephalitis. Of these, the largest global health threat is malaria, since it affects 350-500 million people a year, mostly in third world countries.
Mosquito infestations are most closely associated with standing water, since that is where mosquitos lay eggs. Contry to popular belief, mosquitos do not just live off our feeding on blood. Rather, the sucking of blood is only done for females that are developing their eggs. For their meals, mosquitos eat a variety of other things, such as nectar and juices.
The best ways to avoid mosquito bites are to avoid areas that are infested with mosquitos, and if you happen to be in those areas, to wear mosquito repellent that contains DEET. Some other methods that people use, such as a bug zapper, may not work against mosquitos. The bug zapper, in particular, may actually be harmful to your cause since it attracts, but doesn’t kill mosquitos and may inadvertently kill insects that feed off of mosquitos.