The Mosquito: The Summer Foe

It happens every year when the weather gets hotter. You start to use more time outside on the grill, hiking and running, or throwing around the baseball with your kids in the yard. You look forward to the beginning of summer.

But every year, you forget about one less pleasant characterize of warmer weather – mosquitoes. They are a nuisance to anyone who spends time outdoors, especially in humid and wet regions of the world.

Around the world, there are more than 3,500 species of mosquitoes. The ones we commonly come in contact with are those whose females satisfy on humans; other species prefer nectar or plant juices. The females require the nutrients in blood in order to produce eggs.

Mosquitoes typically live around water, where they copy. Creeks, rivers, lakes, and marshland are ideal places for mosquitoes to lay eggs and copy in large numbers. So, those people who flock to bodies of water for summer fun are more likely to run into mosquitoes. Wherever there is a place for nevertheless, standing water, there is a possibility for mosquito arrival. This can include anything from trash cans and recycling bins to gutters and rough spots in your yard that don’t drain well. Anywhere that collects water is a breeding ground for mosquito eggs during the summer.

Based on the species of mosquito and the temperature, eggs will typically hatch and then become larva and pupa after that. The first three stages – egg, larva, pupa – last anywhere from five to fourteen days. The adult emerges after the pupa stage, usually with a life expectancy of one to two months.

Although mosquitoes are a major nuisance with bites and buzzing, they also can carry a number of diseases which make can make them more dangerous than we realize. Mosquitoes have a meaningful and sometimes deadly impact around the world.

The most commonly known diseases carried by mosquitoes, as often discussed in the news, are malaria and the West Nile virus. However, mosquitoes can carry other viral diseases, including yellow fever, dengue fever, epidemic polyarthritis, Rifty Valley Fever, and other types of invasive diseases.

The mosquito genus Anopheles and the malaria it can carry explain millions of deaths each year around the world. North America is not a home to this species of mosquito; however, nearly all species of mosquitoes can carry the filariasis worm. The filariasis worm causes elephantiasis, which afflicts 40 million people worldwide.

Although mosquitoes can be dangerous, the danger is less in the United States than in other parts of the world. However, precaution is always necessary. To reduce the number of mosquitoes near your home, eliminate areas where standing water can gather, keep your lawn and weeds low, look into mosquito control systems for your backyard, and always use insect repellent when spending time outdoors. With education and the right prevention tactics, you can avoid our summer foe, the mosquito.

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