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Differences Between Male and Female Mosquitos

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What Are The Differences Between Male And Female Mosquitos?

You might swat every mosquito that comes in your vicinity, but did you know that only female mosquitos bite humans? Read on to find out more about the differences between male and female mosquitos.

Characteristics Of Male Mosquitos

Male mosquitos are typically smaller than their female counterparts. They have more flagella, or fine hairs, on their antennae which help them to hear and search for female mosquitos. Male mosquitos live around 1 to 2 weeks, which is about half the length of the average female mosquito lifespan. Male mosquitos typically avoid human interaction, getting the energy they need for survival from plant nectar and other plant juices.

Characteristics of Female Mosquitos

Female mosquitos are larger than male mosquitos. Female mosquitos live longer than male mosquitos and can live up to 4 weeks. Female mosquitos flap their wings up to 500 times a second which creates that buzzing sound humans find so annoying, but male mosquitos find so attractive. Female mosquitos must feed off of human blood to reproduce for which they use their proboscis, specific mouthparts designed for the purpose of piercing skin and drawing blood. 

Why Do Female Mosquitos Bite?

Female mosquitos must complete a blood meal in order to get the protein and energy they need to develop their eggs. An adult female needs only 2 days after reaching sexual maturity to bite its first host. Female mosquitos utilize visual input as well as chemical and heat sensors to find mammals in their vicinity on which to feed. They can detect the carbon dioxide that all mammals expel when they breathe out and use this as their divining rod. Ultimately, female mosquitos decide who to feed on by the quantity of CO2 emitted by the host. 

Since male mosquitos do not bite they do not transmit disease. Since female mosquitos feed on the blood of humans, reptiles, birds and other animals, they carry and transmit several serious diseases including Zika virus, West Nile virus, dengue, and malaria. 

To help protect yourself from pesky bug bites and from contracting any severe illnesses, call a pest professional to protect yourself and your home from mosquitos. 

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The creator of this review received compensation by RMICPA, LLC on behalf of Terminix®. This review is the opinion of its creator and its claims are not endorsed or evaluated by RMICPA, LLC.

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