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Debunking Mosquito Myths

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Mosquitoes are tiny-but-fierce creatures who will ruin any outdoor party! Not only can their buzzing annoy and their bites irritate, they can also be carriers of harmful diseases that are dangerous to your family.

Here are some of the myths (and related truths) that you need to know in order to have the best mosquito control for your home and property.

mosquito myths
 

Myth 1: All mosquitoes bite humans.

False. Only about half of mosquitoes are interested in humans. The female half. This is because they need the nutrients in blood in order to produce their eggs and breed. Male mosquitoes are complete vegetarians.

Myth 2: Mosquitoes prefer certain blood types.

False. Female mosquitoes are attracted to human and pets because of the carbon dioxide that they breathe into the air, their body heat, and the lactic acid that is secreted by humans. While people with Type O blood have been shown to be bitten more often in certain studies, this probably isn’t about a mosquito preference. A ‘preference’ for certain blood types likely has more to do with the fact that people with different blood types may secrete more lactic acid than others, making it easier for mosquitoes to find them.

See Also: Do Mosquitoes Like You More?

Myth 3: Certain skin colors get more bites.

False. As mentioned above, mosquitoes choose the people to bite mostly based upon the scent of lactic acid, and the presence of body heat and carbon dioxide. There is no correlation related to skin color.

Myth 4: All mosquitoes carry disease.

False. Although all mosquito bites have the potential to cause uncomfortable itching and swollen bumps, not all mosquitoes are carrying diseases.

Myth 5: Mosquitoes prefer larger sized people.

False. Just like with the idea of mosquitoes preferring certain blood types, the fact that mosquitoes tend to bite larger people more likely has to do with the fact that they are easier to find. Larger people will tend to release more body heat, as well carbon dioxide as their breathing is heavier. This just makes larger people easier prey for mosquitoes, and doesn’t mean that they are tastier in any way.

Myth 6: Changing your diet will keep mosquitoes away.

False. Although many people believe that eating certain foods will keep mosquitoes away, it’s simply not true. Mosquitoes may be blood-suckers, but they are not vampires who can be kept at bay with garlic or some other type of food. On the other hand, some studies have shown that people who drink alcohol may be more susceptible to being bitten by mosquitoes, so that may be something to take into consideration.

Myth 7: Mosquitoes only hang around swamps.

False. While they do like ponds and other collections of stagnant water for breeding, mosquitoes will hang out just about anywhere if there is access to even the slightest amount of water. Dry spots might be less populated with these pests, but even a small puddle or bucket of rainwater will work for laying their eggs.

Myth 8: Because they’re nocturnal, mosquitoes are only out at night.

False. Although they do like to hide away during the heat of the day, mosquitoes can still bite even when the sun is up. Mosquitoes are more apt to choose their activity related to the temperature, rather than the time of day. They like the coolness of the evening which is why they tend to come out when the sun goes down, but it’s best to remain protected during all times of day.

Myth 9: The United States is safe from mosquito-borne disease.

False. It doesn’t really matter what part of the US you are in, there is some risk of mosquito-borne diseases everywhere. From carriers of dengue fever to chikungunya, to West Virus and heartworm, mosquitoes that can infect you and your pets with diseases are in the south, Midwest, east, and north. And as tourism and travel continue to grow, so does the risk of bring exposure to other diseases.

See Also: Staying Safe from Pest Spread Diseases

Myth 10: Mosquitoes die after biting you.

False. This myth may come from some confusion around certain types of bees who die after stinging a person. As far as mosquitoes go, they are alive and well after biting you. In fact, the simple act of sucking your blood is what allows female mosquitoes to produce eggs—meaning you’ve just contributed to the species growing larger!

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