Number one killer in the world! Mosquitos

Number one killer in the world! Mosquitos

Everybody hates mosquitos. The unofficial state bird of Louisiana, the mosquito is probably the insect you think of the most related to our state. This winged devil buzzes around for most of the year and despite having a life span of only up to two months, this little guy has racked up quite the body count.  

Mosquitos kill roughly 750,000 people per year through disease transmission in the blood and are ranked the deadliest animal in the world. Mosquitoes love our wet habitat in Louisiana because of all the standing water for their eggs. You’ve probably seen mosquito larvae twitching around in a flower pot or cup left outside and it’s gross to watch.

There are almost 3,000 species of mosquito all over the world and almost 200 of those live in North America. Different species can carry different diseases. 

Flashback to a quick biology lesson: Every living thing is classified in a Taxonomic Hierarchy. The way that they are organized tells us how they are related to each other. The order goes like this:

Kingdom > Phylum > Class > Order > Family > Genus > Species

The Genus is always the first part of the name of the species and it’s an indicator of evolutionary cousins, so to speak. When we talk about “types” of mosquitos, we are using the Genus, not specifically the species. There are many different species involved in each of the “types” that we are about to talk about.

Types of Mosquitos

The most common and the most dangerous species of mosquitos fall under Genus Culex, Genus Anopheles, and Genus Aedes. These three categories of skeeters each carry different diseases.

The Culex mosquito carries West Nile Virus. They lay their eggs at night, they tend to not wander very far from where they were hatched and they usually hibernate during the winter.

The Anopheles mosquito tends to carry the parasites that cause malaria. The larvae of this genus have to stay near the surface of the water rotated on their side otherwise they cannot breath. They breed in stagnant and even polluted water.

The Aedes mosquitos carry Dengue Fever, Eastern Equine Encephalitis, Yellow Fever, and others. This group lays their eggs on dry land and then when floodwater hits, they develop. These guys will feed day or night and are usually the ones breeding in tires.

Diseases Carried

When a mosquito “bites”, it is not actually a bite. It is an injection. The mosquito lands on your skin and pokes a small hole to access your blood. As a survival technique, mosquitos developed a mild pain killer in their saliva that helps prevent you feeling when they poke you right away.

Because of this small injection, mosquitos are masters at transmitting blood borne pathogens. Zika, West Nile, Encephalitis, Chikungunya, Yellow Fever, Dengue Fever, and Malaria are some of the heavy hitters. You’ve probably heard of a few of these. Outbreaks can happen throughout the year, but especially in late summer.


Read some Tips & Tricks for Preventing Mosquitos on our blog!

Preventing Mosquitos

Fun Facts

Despite the severity of the risks associated with mosquito bites, there are some fascinating facts about these winged creatures. They have been around a long time and are well-suited to survival. All of these facts came from and we want to share some of our favorites.

  • The oldest mosquitos are known to be from the Triassic period (400 million years ago)
  • There are 176 species in the United States
  • Mosquitos can fly between 1 and 1.5 miles per hour
  • The average mosquito takes in 5 millionths of a liter of blood during a feeding (It would take 100,000 mosquito bites to fill a teacup)
  • One study showed that a full moon increased mosquito biting activity by 500%

We hope you enjoyed learning more about the deadliest animal in the world. We know that they are an irritating reality of southeast Louisiana and we want to help you keep them under control. Give us a call to talk about mister systems, monthly treatments, and general pest control services to keep your home protected.

Fight the Bite! Call Skeeter Force today for a FREE consultation.