How to Identify a Bug Bite Allergy Quickly and When to Seek Help

 

Ugh. When you have been bitten by an insect, itching and scratching are at the top of your to-do list. You may not be in the mood to explore bug bite identification. But knowing what bit you can help you decide if reaching for calamine lotion or calling your local physician is the best option.

When to See A Doctor for a Bug Bite

For most people, a bug bite is a mild inconvenience. Some itching, scratching, swelling, and redness around the bite area are the most serious symptoms. However, for others, getting bitten by an insect can have more serious consequences. Reactions to bug bites can range from mildly annoying to life-threatening. If you have a bug bite allergy, you are probably already aware of the reaction a bug bite can cause. However, if you are one of the many people who don’t know they have an allergy, then the information below can help you avoid some serious problems.

What Insects Cause Serious Allergic Reactions?

While anyone could be allergic to any insect’s bite, the most common bug bite allergies are caused by mosquitoes, fleas, kissing bugs, bedbugs, bees, wasps, spiders, and certain flies. Technically, these are not all bugs. Some are insects. However, while there is a distinct difference between a bug and an insect, those who are suffering from bug bite allergy symptoms don’t care about the culprit’s scientific nomenclature.

If you have a bug bite allergy, you will develop symptoms every time you get bitten by a particular insect. Over time, the allergy symptoms can grow more severe with each exposure. And while you may experience bug bite allergy symptoms with every mosquito bite, a spider bite may not cause the same or any reaction at all. The reason for this is that each biter’s saliva and venom contain different compounds. These unique compounds can cause an allergic reaction in some people, or no reaction at all, which is why identifying the biter is so important.

How to Know if You Have a Bug Bite Allergy

When bitten by a mosquito or flea, it’s normal for the bite to be red and itchy for a while. Often, a cold compress and an antihistamine will bring some relief. However, if the bite grows hot, the swelling expands, the redness spreads, and the itching doesn’t subside, you’re likely experiencing bug bite allergy symptoms. More serious allergic reactions can include:

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Fever
  • Hives or a red, itchy rash that spreads beyond the site of the bite
  • Wheezing
  • Trouble swallowing
  • Swelling of the neck, lips, throat, or tongue
  • Anxiety and restlessness
  • Rapid pulse
  • Dizziness or a drop in blood pressure
  • Stomach cramps, nausea, or vomiting

The most concerning of these bug bite allergy symptoms are shortness of breath, facial swelling, and trouble swallowing. However, if you experience any of these symptoms, it’s best to consult a physician for treatment.

What to Do if You Develop a Serious Allergic Reaction from Bug Bites?

While some people develop a bug bite allergy at a very young age, for many people, such allergies develop over time. If you experience any severe bug bite allergy symptoms, don’t waste time arguing that you have never been allergic before. Document your symptoms, and note when they emerged relative to the initial bite. Then get to an allergist to investigate.

Your allergist will conduct a thorough health history with particular attention to your past experience with bug bites. Then, a skin-prick test will be done, introducing a tiny amount of insect venom just below the skin to observe your body’s response. A raised, red spot forming within 15-20 minutes indicates an allergy. If this test is inconclusive, an additional test, similar but more advanced, will be done. A blood test may also be used to diagnose a bug bite allergy.

Treatment for a bug bite allergy may include antihistamines, epinephrine, or possibly corticosteroids. You might explore immunotherapy as a preventative measure.

Contact a Doctor Right Away, but Don’t Panic

If you have experienced a bug bite and develop symptoms of a bug bite allergy, seek medical attention. Your doctor can help you to control the symptoms and refer you to an allergist. The allergist will evaluate and diagnose the allergy and provide more targeted relief for future bites.

If you or a family member has a bug bite allergy, it’s important to take proactive steps to protect your home and property from biting pests.

How to Protect Against Bug Bites

If you or a family member has an insect allergy, knowing how to prevent bug bites can be a real lifesaver. Many products on the market can help keep bugs from biting, and professional insect control services are invaluable for minimizing the risk when outdoors. However, your first line of defense is good property maintenance. Indoors and out, keep your property clean and tidy, paying special attention to the habits of the insects you’re allergic to.

For instance, standing water is a boon for mating mosquitoes. Dry brush, leaf litter, and other debris provide excellent shelter for fleas, ticks, and mosquitoes. A local pest control expert will help you learn more about pest control, like how to prevent ticks in the yard and how to keep your premises clear of the pests that provoke your bug bite allergy.

Once you’ve cleared your home and property of insect habitats and food, you can initiate using additional protective methods like:

  • Spraying insect repellent
  • Lighting citronella candles and torches
  • Avoiding perfumes and cologne
  • Using bug zappers
  • Planting insect-repelling plants
  • Hiring professional mosquito control services

Bug-Proof Your Home with Mosquito Joe

Effective insect control depends upon a multi-pronged approach. Do all you can to make your home and property less inviting to the bloodsucking pests that feed on your family and pets. Take precautions to prevent getting bitten. But when you or someone you love suffers from bug bite allergy symptoms, you need to do more.

Mosquito Joe is your neighborhood pest control specialist. We are a proud member of the Neighborly community of home service specialists. All our work is backed by the Neighborly Done Right Promise™ and our Mosquito Joe® Satisfaction Guarantee. We provide services across the country, and we tailor our treatments to your specific needs.

Reclaim the outdoors for family fun again! Call us today at 1-855-275-2563 or request a quote online.

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Pest Control: The Dos and Don’ts

 

Pest control is about far more than dealing with the annoyance of bugs and rodents. It is a vital key to ensuring your family’s health and safety. Also, an unchecked pest problem on your property will spread to affect your neighbors. Pests carry diseases and germs, but the overuse of pesticides can present hazards that demand awareness. Pest control safety is critically important for ourselves, our families, pets, and neighborhoods. So let’s consider the pest control do’s and don’ts that will keep your home pest-free.

Do: Identify the Pest and Choose the Right Pest Control Method

When you see a nasty bug, you may want to grab a can of whatever is under the sink and start spraying. However, it’s wise to resist this understandable impulse. Some pests are not remotely harmed by the spray that kills others. So, not only does a haphazard approach waste both time and money, but it also adds chemicals to your environment. And just as bacteria can develop a resistance to overused antibiotics, the same can be true of pests to pesticides. So, the first rule of chemical safety do’s and don’ts is to identify and accurately treat the existing problem.

Don’t: Use DIY Pesticides Without Proper Knowledge and Training

Our natural aversion to pests makes many people cringe when they hear anything about mosquitoes, fleas, rats, mice, and other nasty critters. We don’t want to know anything about them — we just want them gone! But this is the second item on our list of pest control do’s and don’ts for an important reason. Using pesticides without understanding both the target and the chemicals involved can lead to several potential problems.

Not only do people often reach for the wrong pesticide for the problem, but also we may decide “if some is good, more is better.” This is a dangerous misconception. The toxins can accumulate, risking food contamination and accumulation on surfaces family members touch. Further, excessive or indiscriminate pesticide use can make pest control harmful to humans while leading to both environmental damage and pests developing immunity to currently effective pesticides.

Do: Keep Your Home and Property Clean and Tidy

An essential part of effective pest control is keeping your home and property free from the conditions that attract pests. Unfortunately, many insects and small mammals have evolved to benefit from our messes. From spilled or untended food to overgrown grass or standing water, we often provide all the food, shelter, and breeding support these pests need to thrive. So, good hygiene indoors and out is essential for pest control safety. The less you provide food, water, and shelter to pests, the easier it is to keep them out of your home and property.

Don’t: Ignore Pest Infestations

No pests will just go away if you ignore them. Most pest species have a fast life cycle. So, when you first discover a pest issue, you may already be dealing with a few generations of pests, including eggs, pupae, larvae, and adult insects. The sooner you can interrupt that life cycle and effectively kill or remove the existing eggs and adults, the sooner and easier the problem can be resolved.

Ignoring a few pests can rapidly escalate to a large-scale infestation. Generations of insects are tougher to control and more likely to transmit disease, and some pests can cause structural damage to your home. Whether you’re dealing with rats or termites, you’ll want to end the destruction before it becomes far more expensive to repair. Therefore, prompt action is a definite “do” among safe pest control do’s and don’ts.

Do: Use Pesticides Safely and as Directed

Pest control safety relies on using pesticides only as directed. Pesticides can be dangerous and harmful chemicals when misused. For instance, some substances remain highly toxic for months unless they are exposed to sunshine. So these should never be used indoors. Others will bond with a surface and remain effective despite rain and dew, while others can easily wash away. Still, other chemicals are highly effective at killing a pest at one stage but not at another. Chemical safety do’s and don’ts specify following all of the manufacturer’s warnings and directions for your well-being and that of your family and the environment.

Don’t: Rely Solely on Pesticide

Effective and eco-friendly pest control requires approaching the infestation from several directions. It is not enough to spray toxic chemicals to eradicate the problem. If your home or property offers abundant food, water, shelter, and a mating habitat, new pests will always have the incentive to move in, even if you recently killed off previous pests. You can thus get into a vicious cycle of killing pests once they arrive rather than deterring them from arriving in the first place.

Instead of relying on pesticides alone, employ excellent hygiene indoors and out. Learn about the specific needs of the pests you’re facing, so you can best identify ways your home meets those needs. You can then eliminate access points to your home or garden. Discover how to create effective barriers to your property. Eliminate sources of food and water. Safely remove nests, deploy taps, and repair all leaky faucets or pipes. A holistic approach to pest control will always be the most effective and safest route for your family.

Do: Stay Educated and Up to Date on Pest Control Techniques

Pest control safety and efficacy is a continually-developing subject. Around the world, scientists are working toward more effective solutions to protect more people from the spread of disease, contagions, and allergens. And this list includes Mosquito Joe, where our team of Entomologists is collaborating with the premier chemical manufacturers in the country to combat mosquitoes, ticks, and fleas. But while people strive to develop more effective pest control that is safe for pets and small children, the pests are evolving in order to resist these defenses. We are essentially in an arms race, and it’s wise to remain informed so that you can best protect your home, family, and your neighbors. We all have an important role to play.

To learn more, visit Mosquito Joe’s blog for educational articles that will keep you updated and informed about pest control do’s and don’ts, problem pests in your neighborhood, and ways to reclaim your outdoor spaces from nasty, biting insects.

Choose Effective Pest Control With Mosquito Joe

Whether you’re combating mosquitoes, fleas, ticks, rodents, gnats, or other pests, call on the experts at your local Mosquito Joe. We provide effective pest control services for residential and commercial properties across the country. All our work is backed by the Neighborly Done Right Promise™ and the Mosquito Joe® satisfaction guarantee, so you know the job will be done right — on time, the first time. We help make your outdoor spaces fun again!

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Complete Guide to Getting Your Home Rid of Fleas for Good

 

Every year, pet lovers dread the return of warmer weather because with it comes flea season. The nasty biters can drive cats, dogs, and even some people frantic with the incessant itching they cause. These bites are not a mere nuisance; they can trigger allergies and cause serious infections for both pets and humans. Thankfully, you can stop dreading the return of warmer weather when you learn how to get rid of fleas for good. Although it won’t be easy as there are many facets to the fight, winning this battle is well worth the effort.

Understand the Stages of the Flea Life Cycle

Understanding the flea life cycle is critical to learning how to get rid of fleas in the home. The four-stage life cycle makes ridding your homes of fleas seem like a never-ending battle. Only 5% of the flea population in your home are adult fleas that are visible to you. The other 95% cannot be seen by the naked eye. So, treating just the adults does little to abate the problem. You also need to learn what kills flea eggs and larvae and use it to reclaim your home.

Flea Eggs
Female fleas can lay up to 50 tiny eggs a day and over 2,000 in their short lives. The eggs are laid on your pets, who then innocently transfer them to other animals and cozy spots in your home. Flea eggs hatch in 1-10 days, which means a new population is not far off.

Flea Larvae
Flea larvae are hatchlings that grow up to ¼ of an inch, feeding on “flea dirt” or pre-digested blood produced by adult fleas. They avoid sunlight, living in dark areas deep in your carpet, bedding, shaded locations in the yard, and upholstery.

Flea Pupae
After 1-6 days, a larva spins a thick, sticky cocoon around itself. Pupae are challenging to get rid of as they stick to their surroundings. They also attract dust and debris, which means they blend in easily and are difficult to see. In addition, the cocoon protects the pupa from most home flea sprays.

Adult Flea
In 8-12 days, the pupae emerge from their cocoons as voracious adult fleas who must begin feeding immediately. They find a host, like your cat or dog, and suck their blood. After the first feeding, adult female fleas are ready to breed and lay eggs in just a few days. Adult fleas live primarily on a single host, feeding on blood and laying eggs for weeks to a couple of months.

Now that you understand the lifecycle of the flea you will be better equipped to rid them from your home. Understanding how to get rid of fleas includes obtaining information on how to kill flea eggs and larvae as well as adults is vital to success. Here are some successful strategies to eradicate fleas.

When Is Flea Season?

Fleas are a year-round problem across the southern and western United States. Elsewhere, flea season, or the time of greatest flea activity, can last for 6-9 months, from early spring through fall.

How Do You Get Fleas in Your House?

The most common way fleas enter the home is by hitching a ride on the family dog or cat. But they can also come in on an old piece of furniture or carpeting. They can also arrive by way of mice, rats, or other mammals that enter the garage or attic. So before you bring something into your home, give it a thorough inspection to ensure it’s not hiding any unwanted guests. It’s also important to make sure your pets receive regular flea treatments.

From the Backyard
Fleas can live and reproduce in shaded spots outdoors, ready to jump onto passing animals or people. As small as a flea may appear, they can jump a significant distance and are very good at hitching a ride on any animal or human that passes by. So, if you want to know how to get rid of fleas in the home, don’t overlook your yard.

From Other Pets Entering Your Home
Hosting playdates for your pup is a great way to socialize your dog and ensure their happiness. But having other pets in your home is another opportunity for fleas to come too.

From Your Pet’s Exposure to Other Animals
Whether at the dog park or your own backyard, when your pet is outdoors there is a good chance they will be exposed to other animals. Even in your fenced yard, you may have visits from wildlife such as skunks, squirrels, rabbits, deer, possums, etc. These other animals carry fleas that may drop eggs to hatch in your yard, and then adult fleas leap onto your pet.

The Neighborhood
Fleas can be a nightmare to control because even once you rid your home and property of these biters, new ones can come in from the neighborhood. So if your neighbor is experiencing a flea problem, there is a good chance that you will too.

Effective Flea Fighting Strategies

Yes, you can learn how to get rid of fleas. Unfortunately, if you share your life with pets, there is no way to rid your home of fleas forever. However, integrating the following strategies into your lifestyle will help you enjoy a flea-free home.

Sanitation
When figuring out how to get rid of fleas, you’ll quickly discover that sanitation is key. Thoroughly clean areas of your home where fleas often breed. Wash your pet’s bedding, your bedding, and your rugs. Then sweep hard surface floors and vacuum the carpets, upholstery, and curtains. A steam cleaning of the carpets and upholstery is helpful for treating severe infestations. Use the hottest water possible and plenty of soap as you clean. This process is what kills flea eggs and larvae.

Pet Treatment
Every pet in your home must be treated for fleas. Bathe your pet with flea shampoo, paying careful attention to the face, neck, belly, and around the tail. Use a fine-toothed flea comb to remove any remaining fleas. A flea collar or a monthly topical flea treatment is highly recommended for all cats and dogs, whether they reside in or out of your home. These topical flea treatments kill flea eggs and larvae as well as adult fleas.

Home Treatment
Hiring professional flea control services to treat your home and garden is the best way to completely disrupt the flea’s life cycle. If you are vigilant with keeping surfaces and furnishing in your home clean, you might only need an outdoor service to get rid of fleas around the exterior of your home.

Follow-up Treatment
Fleas are tenacious pests with a complex life cycle. During the pupae stage, they are resistant to a broad range of flea control products. So sanitation, pet treatments, and home spraying will have to be repeated to get rid of fleas. Plan on at least two or more follow-up treatments within 5-10 days of the initial treatment. Together with continued and vigorous sanitation, this gives you the best chance to break the flea life cycle completely. But if you have pets, you’ll need to continue these practices to keep your home free of these nasty biters.

We Can Help You to Get Rid of Fleas

Fleas are exceptionally fit for survival, but Mosquito Joe can help you to get rid of fleas in your home and yard. Our comprehensive pest control services are available across the country. If you’ve tried every home remedy to get rid of fleas and are making no progress, don’t worry—we’re here for you! We offer barrier sprays, natural treatments, and perimeter control services that effectively keep pests away for up to thirty days. Learn more about how to get rid of fleas with our services, request a quote online, or give us a call at 1-855-275-2563.

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Do Mosquitoes Like Certain Blood Types?

 

Ugh! Why do mosquitoes bite me so much? My friends say having me along is the only bug spray they need! Is it my blood type? What blood type do mosquitoes like? Is it what I eat, what I wear, how I smell?

If these are questions that run through your mind every time you venture outdoors, rest assured, you’re not alone. Many people ask the same questions in an effort to understand why they are a mosquito magnet. Now, a guy or girl magnet, not so bad, but mosquitoes, no thanks! It can be maddening to be so attractive to mosquitoes. So, with help from the bug experts at Mosquito Joe® we’re going to give you the answers to:  Why do mosquitoes bite? We’ll cover mosquitoes and blood type, how different smells attract mosquitoes, and how your clothes can even play a role!

There are actually many possible reasons why you could be a favorite target of the little bloodsuckers. Let’s start answering some of those questions.

Mosquitoes and Blood Type—What the Research Says

For over 100 years, scientists have asked, “Why  do mosquitoes bite certain people more than others?” This curiosity has led them to investigate the variables that attract mosquitoes to bite. A study published in 1974 reviewed 102 participants, measuring how often each was bitten. The researchers evaluated each participant by skin temperature, percentage of subcutaneous fat, pigmentation, age, sex, nutrition, and blood type. Then, blood was extracted from the mosquitoes to determine the blood type most consumed by the feeding females. Among other findings, it was a great way to learn if there is a correlation between mosquitoes and blood type and what blood type mosquitoes like.

After crunching the numbers, researchers concluded that mosquitoes do indeed have a preferred blood type. What blood type do mosquitoes like? The nasty biters show a marked preference for feeding on type O blood. So, if you have blood type O, you are more prone to mosquito bites. (O, what a bummer!) That explains why a mosquito who bites you once, often bites you again (going back for seconds). But why do mosquitoes bite you in the first place? Do they know your blood chemistry before they bite?

A 2004 study evaluated participants’ secretor status as well as blood type. Many people secrete antigens from their blood type in bodily fluids like sweat, saliva, and tears, while others do not. This means that creatures with an exceptional sense of smell, like dogs and mosquitoes (and presumably vampires), can detect the blood type of secretors without directly testing (or tasting) their blood. So, it’s not enough to ask, “What blood type do mosquitoes like best?” It turns out that what mosquitoes reallylike are secretors with blood type O. Type B is another favored blood type that attracts mosquitoes, though to a lesser degree than type O.

But why do mosquitoes like type O blood so much? A 2019 study investigated the egg production of mosquitoes that fed on different blood types but found no significant difference. So, the question remains unanswered, though there are indications that additional factors other than blood type are involved in the attraction of mosquitoes.

Why Do Mosquitoes Bite?

So, why do mosquitoes bite anyone? We know that only female mosquitoes bite people, and they do so to drink our blood. The blood meal provides essential nutrients for growing eggs and reproduction. In feeding on our blood, mosquitoes spread so many diseases that they kill more humans worldwide than any other animal. So, scientists are keen to learn why mosquitoes bite certain people. It is a key consideration to aid efforts to control outbreaks of malaria and other mosquito-borne diseases like dengue fever, Zika virus, and West Nile virus.

So, let’s see what other than your blood type can make you attract mosquitoes and get bitten more than your friends. Some of this information will help you avoid getting bitten, even if your blood is of the tasty type O variety.

Is What You Wear a Factor?

 Woman on park bench in pink tank top and shorts scratching her forearm.

When answering the question, “Why do mosquitoes bite me so much?” you must consider the clothes you wear when you’re outside. It is not yet clear why, but biting mosquitoes are attracted to the color black. Multiple studies, the oldest dating back to 1910, have documented this color preference, though the underlying reason is still obscure. Female mosquitoes also show a preference for red, orange, and cyan.

So, when you’re participating in outdoor activities or attending an outdoor event, wear white or light-colored clothing to make yourself less attractive to mosquitoes. But remember that they bite right through thin, lightweight fabrics worn close to the skin. Therefore, loose-fitting clothing in a light color that covers your wrists and ankles is best, especially for those prone to mosquito bites.

Does the Scent You Give Off Matter?

Have you ever wondered how mosquitoes can find you so fast? They hunt their prey by smell and zero in on the carbon dioxide you release whenever you exhale. There is evidence to support the theory that mosquitoes can detect their preferred Type O blood antigens in the breath of Type O secretors. Certainly, the antigens may play a part in body odor, which can also attract mosquitoes.

While female mosquitoes hunt people to feed on their blood, they also feed on the nectar of many flowering plants. They find their food through scent and have proven to be attracted to people wearing floral perfumes, colognes, and lotions. If you don’t want to attract mosquitoes, skip using floral-scented soap, shampoo, conditioner, lotions, and scented deodorant when heading outdoors. Using unscented deodorant won’t repel biters, but it can make you less attractive to them.

Can What You Eat Attract Mosquitoes?

Your odds of getting bitten go beyond the clothes you wear, how you smell, and a mosquito’s preferred blood type. Sometimes, it seems as if mosquitoes enjoy a midsummer night party as much as we do. If there’s beer, guacamole, and banana daiquiris, then mosquitoes are in!

Studies have found that beer and foods rich in potassium, such as bananas, avocados, and dried fruit, tend to attract mosquitoes. The bloodsuckers seem to be particularly interested in biting those who have consumed beer or eaten bananas. However, there does not appear to be anything you can eat to repel these biters. Studies have dispelled the rumors that eating garlic or taking vitamin B will protect you from being bitten.

Is Your Chemical Composition Important?

Female mosquitoes are frighteningly adept at finding us, their favorite food source. A new study, released in August 2022, demonstrates that mosquitoes’ olfactory system, responsible for their acute sense of smell, is unusually complex. Even the mosquitoes whose olfactory sense was damaged by researchers could unerringly find their favored mosquito magnets, us. It is believed that when mosquitoes bite certain people consistently, it is about much more than blood type. Scientists have come to believe that the specific makeup of the beneficial bacteria living on your skin plays a role in attracting biters. Your genetic makeup and unique chemical composition make you prone to mosquito bites.

Does it Matter When and How Much You Exercise?

Exercise is good for you, right? Surely, it can’t be an answer to “Why do mosquitoes bite me so much?” But two compounds we know attract mosquitoes are carbon monoxide and lactic acid, both are produced in abundance when we exercise. When we exhale, we release carbon monoxide. Our bodies produce lactic acid, which increases when we use our muscles. So, exercising increases the levels of these mosquito-attracting substances we release. While exercise is a factor, the intensity of your workout can also be a factor. A more intense workout will produce more lactic acid, sweat, and carbon monoxide. Additionally, strenuous exercise causes us to produce more uric acid, and ammonia, all of which can make you more prone to mosquito bites. As for the best time to exercise outdoors? If you’re committed to your outdoor exercise routine, it’s best to avoid exercising at dawn or dusk, which is typically the height of mosquito activity.

Are You More Vulnerable If You’re Pregnant?

A 2000 study revealed that pregnant women are twice as likely to get bitten by mosquitoes than are women who aren’t pregnant. It is believed that the slightly high body temperature and increased release of carbon monoxide may factor into this preference.
As we’ve seen, there are many possible answers to the question, “Why do mosquitoes bite me so much?” While it goes far beyond learning what blood type mosquitoes like most, it remains an intriguing question. Let’s take a closer look at mosquitoes and blood type.

Mosquitoes and Blood Type

So, we’ve examined what blood type mosquitoes like most and found that studies consistently show that type O secretors attract mosquitoes more than other people. But why do mosquitoes like type O blood so much? It’s a great question, but unfortunately, we don’t have a definitive answer yet.

At this point, scientists aren’t 100% sure why mosquitoes like type O blood. Some believe it has to do with which blood type was dominant in the region where a mosquito species evolved. For instance, Ae. aegyptiis believed to have evolved in Africa, where type O is the most prevalent blood type. Meanwhile, Ae. albopictus originated in Asia, with pockets of population higher in people with type A blood. Interestingly, Ae. albopictus doesn’t appear to have a preferred blood type.

Studies examining the quantity and quality of eggs laid by females feeding exclusively on type O blood show no meaningful difference from eggs laid by females feeding on other blood types. So, what’s going on? We’re not sure, but it does raise more questions.

What Blood Type Do Mosquitoes NOT Like?

We’ve been eager to look into what blood type mosquitoes like and why, but it’s also worth considering if there is a blood type that doesn’t attract mosquitoes. In other words, what blood type do mosquitoes not like?

It turns out that of all blood types people have, mosquitoes like type A the least. But if the proteins in different blood types don’t affect the eggs, why does the female care?

After O, the next most popular blood type with mosquitoes is type B, followed by type AB. So, mosquitoes’ blood type preferences are O > B > AB > A.

Considering that the biters might be trying to avoid the proteins of type A blood, scientists isolated the antigens. While the antigens of blood type O were more attractive than others, type A antigens were more attractive than those of blood type B or AB. So, asking, “What blood type do mosquitoes like and dislike?” just leads to more questions.

As fascinating as the mosquitoes and blood type questions are, remember that there are many other factors influencing why mosquitoes bite.

How To Prevent Mosquito Bites

Now that you know what blood type mosquitoes like most and the many reasons why mosquitoes bite certain people more than others, how can you protect yourself? When you are prone to mosquito bites, preventing them takes a multipronged approach that includes the following:

  • Keeping the yard well-maintained.
  • Removing all sources of standing water.
  • Avoiding floral-scented perfumes and lotion when attending outdoor events.
  • Lighting citronella candles and torches.
  • Hiring professional mosquito control services.

Stay Bite-Free With Mosquito Joe!

Mosquito Joe is dedicated to reclaiming your outdoor spaces for bite-free family fun. Our comprehensive pest control services are available across the country and include barrier treatments, mosquito misting services, and eco-friendly treatments to repel mosquitoes.

Whichever approach you choose, rest assured that all our work is backed by the Neighborly Done Right Promise™and the Mosquito Joe guarantee, which ensures your satisfaction. Request a free quote today!

Let us make the outdoors fun again for everyone!

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Life Cycle of a Mosquito

 

Understanding the life cycle of a mosquito is essential for effective pest control. It helps us find ways to interrupt the mosquito life cycle, thereby reducing the number of biting adults. For instance, you may already know how important it is to remove sources of standing water from your property. Even just a bottle cap full of still water gives female mosquitoes a good place to lay their eggs, ensuring another generation of biting, blood-sucking insects. Denying them nesting sites on your property forces them to lay their eggs elsewhere. Since most mosquito species fly just 1-3 miles in their lifetime, this can significantly reduce the number of biters around your home. Similarly, understanding how the life cycle of mosquitoes changes in winter provides an important opportunity to further control the population.

The Four Stages of the Mosquito Life Cycle

There are four distinct stages to the life cycle of a mosquito: egg, larva, pupa, and adult. Although only the adult female mosquito bites people, every stage of the mosquito life cycle is essential for supporting the population of these biting, blood-sucking pests.

Mosquito Eggs
Most female mosquitoes lay their eggs on the surface of standing water. However, some prefer damp soil that will soon be flooded. Typically, mosquito eggs hatch in 24-48 hours, entering the larva stage.

Mosquito Larva
The second stage of the life cycle of a mosquito is when they become larvae (singular larva). The larva lives in standing water, coming to the surface to breathe. The larvae feed on microorganisms in the water as they grow. The growing larvae shed their skin four times, revealing a larger larva each time. After about ten days, the final shedding reveals the pupal stage.

Mosquito Pupa
In the pupal stage of the mosquito life cycle, the insect doesn’t feed. This stage is analogous to a caterpillar’s time in a cocoon. The pupa develops into the winged adult mosquito we are anxious to avoid.

Mosquito Adult
At last, the adult mosquito emerges from the pupal stage, typically in 2-3 days. Initially, the mosquito needs time for its body parts to harden before it can fly. Then, adult females begin biting people to suck their blood. They lay their eggs to begin the life cycle all over again.

Spring through fall, the mosquito life cycle rapidly repeats every 10-14 days, with many adults, eggs, larvae, and pupae coexisting in your yard. But when the temperatures drop, something strange happens.

Environmental Effects on the Mosquito Life Cycle

Mosquitoes are cold-blooded, so they are heavily affected by temperature fluctuations. They are most active in warm weather, particularly at temperatures around 80℉. The mosquito life cycle time varies by species and weather conditions, but many mosquito species complete their life cycle in 14 days at 70℉ and in just ten days at 80℉.

In colder temperatures, mosquitoes slow down. At 60℉, they grow lethargic, and they shut down at 50℉. But there are several mosquito varieties in the United States that can survive the winter, even in places where it snows. These insects continue the life cycle throughout winter, causing the two-week time frame of the mosquito life cycle to balloon to several months and, in some cases, years.

Life Cycle Process of Mosquito Diapause

It’s such a relief when mosquitoes go away in winter. But of course, they don’t actually leave, and most don’t die. Many mosquitoes simply stop biting people during the colder months, instead slipping into a form of hibernation or dormancy called diapause. This dormancy period can extend the life cycle of a mosquito by months. Shortening daylight hours and dropping temperatures signal the insects that it is time to go dormant. By entering diapause in winter, mosquitoes survive the cold, saving their energy and focusing on reproduction. This is how mosquitoes can attack the spring in undiminished numbers. Unfortunately, this is also how the diseases mosquitoes carry survive the winter.

Diapause can occur at different mosquito life cycle stages for different species. Some mosquitoes, like members of genera Culiseta, Culex, and Anopheles, enter diapause as adult insects. Come spring, they resume feeding and then breed. But those in the genus Aedes lay winter-hardy eggs that remain dormant for months until the warmer weather of spring returns. Some mosquito eggs remain dormant for years before hatching healthy, hungry larvae. These winter-hardy eggs are often submerged under ice and hatch when spring and warmer weather arrive. These four winter-hardy genera represent roughly 1500 species of mosquitoes that are active throughout the United States.

Diapause enables cold-blooded mosquitoes to survive sub-zero temperatures. However, when mosquitoes hibernate in winter, they are particularly vulnerable to pest control efforts. Mosquito control in winter can drastically cut down the population of biting pests in spring.

Mosquito Diapause and Winter Pest Control

We’ve seen that the life cycle of a mosquito can be greatly lengthened in winter by diapause. But the cold weather makes adult mosquitoes slow and lethargic, and rafts of eggs wait months to hatch. So winter time is a crucial opportunity to go on the offensive with these pest control actions:

  • Adult female mosquitoes hide during the winter, taking shelter in tall grass, overgrown brush, yard debris, garden waste, logs, or fallen branches. Keep the yard cleaned up and the plants well-tended to eliminate shelter for dormant mosquitoes.
  • Standing water is crucial for mosquitoes to live and reproduce. So eliminating all sources of standing water on your property—even in winter—is essential to breaking the mosquito life cycle. Remove or overturn wheelbarrows, empty pots, buckets, or anything that can hold water. Empty catch trays religiously. And wipe down patio furniture and outdoor toys that can collect water.
  • Hire professional mosquito control service from your neighbors at Mosquito Joe. We know all the tricks the female mosquito employs to ensure that she and her hungry brood survive to feast on you and your family when the time is right. Our professionals will effectively kill dormant adults and their unhatched eggs.

Choose Mosquito Joe for Winter Pest Control

At Mosquito Joe, we take winter pest control seriously. It allows us to help you get ahead of the biters so that you and your family can enjoy the outdoors in peace. In addition to our comprehensive mosquito control solutions, we offer natural pest control treatments, as well as relief from fleas and ticks. Request a quote using our online form, or give us a call at 1-855-275-2563.

We look forward to making your outdoors fun again!

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