It’s important to create awareness around the life cycle of mosquitoes, because having a better understanding of the process will help you prevent mosquito breeding in your yard. Did you know that adult female mosquitoes can lay eggs individually or by the hundred all at once? Eggs can hatch within short time periods (48 hours) or endure freezing temperatures and dry conditions for long time periods before eventually hatching. The eggs must be submerged into water in order to hatch, so eliminating all standing water in your yard is vital.
The mosquito goes through four separate and distinct stages of its life cycle; egg, larvae, pupa and adult. Each of these stages can be easily recognized by its special appearance.
The Life Cycle of a Mosquito
- Stage 1: Eggs- Rafts Floating: Female mosquitoes lay hundreds of eggs every few days during their lifespan, directly on or near water. They can be attached to other eggs and form rafts, such as the case of Culex species while other species, such as Aedes lay their eggs singly. Water is required in order for the eggs to hatch which typically happens within 48 hours (once eggs hatch, larvae emerge).
- Stage 2: Larvae- Rolling All Around: Larvae are referred to as “rollers” because of how they appear while swimming, this is also known as the baby stage. Larvae live in the water and come to the surface to breathe; molting their skin four times (growing larger after each molt). Most larvae have tubes for breathing and hang upside down from the water surface. After undergoing four stages of molting, the larvae become pupae.
- Stage 3: Pupae (non-feeding stage/hardest to control)- Resting Before They Make Their Grand Entrance: The Pupae is considered the teenage stage of the life cycle, and the non-feeding era. Pupa still live in the water and continue to swim around. They are often referred to as “tumblers” because when disturbed, pupae tumble down to the safety of deeper water, and gradually float back to the surface. They are lighter than water so they live at the surface, and must occasionally take oxygen through breathing tubes called, “trumpets.” During this stage, the adult mosquito begins to develop, which can take up to four days dependent upon the temperature of the water.
- Stage 4: Adult- Finally All Grown Up: Adult mosquitoes will rest on the water with two concerns; mating and feeding. Once the body is completely dry and hardened, and the wings have fully opened, they are able to fly. Males locate females by the sound of their wings. Once they mate, males live three to five days and females live considerably longer, upwards of one to two months.
Don’t let mosquitoes setup shop in your backyard, ensure you’re eliminating any standing water, keeping your lawn cut short and shrubs trimmed down. Allow your local Mosquito Joe to be your second line of defense against these pesky nuisances. Mosquito Joe provides mosquito control treatment to residential and commercial customers. Our technicians are trained mosquito control experts dedicated to one thing: getting rid of mosquitoes so you can enjoy being outside again. Take back your yard and give us a call today!