Who is More Attractive to Mosquitoes
Why are some people so much more attractive to mosquitoes than others? And what can you do about the pesky little bloodsuckers, especially if you don’t want to resort to DEET? (DEET, while effective, is also weakly neurotoxic in humans.)
To start, there are some 150 different species of mosquitoes in the United States, and they differ in biting persistence, habits, ability to transmit disease, and even flying ability.
Mosquitoes of the genus Culex are painful and persistent biters and they will gladly fly into your house to bite you. They bite at dusk and after dark, and they can spread West Nile virus. On the upside, however, they are not strong fliers and won’t fly long distances from where they hatched. And, they’d prefer to bite a bird than a human. A common Culex species in the U.S. is C. pipiens, the Northern House mosquito.
Then there’s the genus Aedes, which includes A. aegypti and A. albopictus, the Asian Tiger mosquito. The former is not a problem in the U.S.; the latter is. Both can transmit Yellow Fever and Dengue Fever. Aedes mosquitoes feed early in the morning as well as at dusk and into the evening. They might also bite you during the day if it’s cloudy or if you wander into a shady place. Fortunately, they probably won’t enter your house – but they do prefer biting mammals like humans over other animals, and they are very strong fliers.
So what makes a delicious cocktail for a mosquito?
More sweat and carbon dioxide have been cited, but the results from experiments are not always consistent. This is due mainly to the many different species and the enormously complex odour-making mechanisms each of us possesses.
Lactic acid seems to be a definite attraction to most mosquito species. When you eat certain foods, such as cheese, soya, yogurt and pickled vegetables, and do vigorous exercise, you will have more lactic acid on your skin. That is very attractive to some mosquito species.
Don’t believe all those people who say they are never bitten! The fact is that many more people are bitten by mosquitoes than you would think. It is all due to the reaction; people react in different ways to the mosquito leaving saliva when sucking their blood. This depends on environmental and allergic reactions. Many more people are bitten, but because they have no symptoms they are convinced that they are not attractive to mosquitoes. If only they knew!
To sum up, genetics and our chemical/microbial mix determine whether we are going to be bitten by mosquitoes or not. There seems to be a link between these and a person’s blood type. The amount of CO2, garlic or alcohol we consume, or dark-coloured clothing, are all secondary factors, but may help in keeping mosquitoes at bay.
Practical ways to keep mosquitoes at bay
Taking a few simple precautions can help. Covering up most exposed parts of the skin is a definite advantage. You can make sure that you put herbs and plants in your garden or on your balcony which actually repel mosquitoes. Avoid going out when humidity is at its peak (at dawn and dusk). This is also the time when winds die down, which give mosquitoes better ’landing conditions’. But even if you do all this, mosquitoes will still be attracted to you just as much!
A new type of mosquito trap running on solar electricity and using human odor as bait has cut mosquito populations by 70 percent in a test on a malaria-ridden island in Kenya, according to a new study. Mosquitoes are very hard to exterminate but there are ways to prevent it. Humans are most vulnerable when sleeping and it is exactly at these moments that mosquitoes are the most active, since mosquitoes are nocturnal creatures. So the most effective way is to prevent the mosquitoes from being near humans when we are sleeping. There are various ways like using a mosquito catcher indoors or outdoors. So selecting the most effective catcher and using it at the right places is important. Get more information from http://www.moskiller.com/.