Mosquitoes belong to the clan Diptera, and suborder Nematocera. The term for the family to which mosquitoes belong, “Culicidae” is derived from Latin, which translates to “gnat”. Today, nearly 110 genera have been identified in the family Culicidae and over 3,600 species have been documented.
Most mosquitoes are two-winged insects no larger than 20 mm in size. From an evolutionary perspective, the earliest mosquito fossils were discovered from the Cretaceous, some 90 to 100 million years ago. These insects are also considered pests as they cause different types of diseases in humans and animals.
The family Culicidae is classified into two subfamilies:
Mosquitoes belong to the Diptera clan and suborder Nematocera. Mosquitoes belong to the “Culicidae” family, and the term is derived from Latin, and means “gnat”. Nearly 110 genera have been identified in the family Culicidae and over 3,600 species have been documented till date. Mosquitoes are two-winged insects and are approximately 20 mm in size. The earliest mosquito fossils were discovered from the Cretaceous, long back, about 90 to 100 million years ago. Mosquitoes also fall in the category of pests as they cause various types of diseases in humans and animals.
“Culicidae” is classified into two subfamilies, namely
i) Anopheles gambiae
ii) Culiseta longiareolata
In one particular group of mosquitoes, the females have long mouth parts that are adapted for piercing and for sucking blood. The male on the other hand,, which feeds on nectar and water, has rudimentary mouthparts. The female mosquitoes of this particular group prefer the blood of the warm-blooded animals, and when they bite, they inject their salivary fluid into the wound, and this causes the swelling and irritation that we see. Many infectious diseases such as malaria, yellow fever, dengue, and filariasis are transmitted through the bite of the mosquito.
i) Only female mosquitoes are known to bite humans, a rather surprising fact to know, but the reason for this is that they, the female mosquitoes get the protein and other nutrients that are essential for the production and development of the egg.
ii) Mosquitoes are often said to be as old as Dinosaurs. The mosquitoes have been biting humans for a long time now.
iii) Another very strange and amusing fact is that mosquitoes have the capacity to learn and remember what their hosts smell like, and they can locate them wherever they go, in order to bite you.
iv) Mosquitoes have a very short life span and it is estimated that they live for approximately two months.
v) Around the world, there are about 3000 species of mosquitoes.
vi) Mosquitoes are considered to be addicted to Carbon Dioxide. Carbon dioxide is one among the various ways during which mosquitoes find their next feast. Mosquitoes use a special organ called the ‘maxillary palp’ which helps them to follow the smell of Carbon Dioxide (CO2),that is released from our breath and then they attack.
1. What is the scientific classification of Mosquitoes?
Mosquitoes make up the family ‘Culicidae’ and they belong to the Diptera clan. Mosquitoes in which the females' mouthparts are adapted for piercing and sucking belong to the subfamily known as ‘Culicinae’. When they bite, they inject some of their salivary fluid, which is the apparent reason for the swelling we see, and the irritation we feel after a mosquito bite.The common house mosquito is classified as ‘Culex Pipiens and the particular species which transmit malaria are the ‘Anopheles’.
2. What do you know about the female mosquito?
The female mosquito lays eggs only in water and there are certain species that lay their eggs in running water. The other mosquitoes lay eggs in woodland pools, in the marshes, the swamps, in estuaries,and also in some containers like rain barrels. Larvae of mosquitoes are often called ‘wrigglers' only because of their wriggling motion in the water. Small Fish are responsible for destroying a large number of the mosquito eggs and larvae.The breeding of mosquitoes may be controlled to a certain extent by using various insecticides and sprays.
3. Write something about the Mosquito?
Mosquito is the common name of around 2000 species of two-winged insects, which are found from the tropics to the Arctic Circle, from lowlands to the peaks of high mountains. This insect has long, slender wings and are unusual among flies in having small scales over most of the wing veins. Their body is narrow and the long antennae that they have, have numerous strands of curly hair that are short in the females and long and bushy in the males.
4. Write two interesting facts about the Mosquito?
Two interesting facts about mosquitoes are;
i) A very strange and amusing fact, that is sometimes unbelievable, is that mosquitoes have the capacity to learn and remember what their hosts or victims smell like, and they can locate them wherever they go, in order to bite you.
ii) Mosquitoes are said to be addicted to Carbon Dioxide and this CO2 is one of the many ways during which mosquitoes find their next feast, or next bite. They have a special organ which they use called the ‘maxillary palp’ and this helps them to follow the smell of Carbon Dioxide (CO2),that is released from our breath and then they attack.
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6. What is the scientific name of a mosquito?
Mosquitoes belong to the order Diptera, and family Culicidae. This family is further classified into two subfamilies: Anophelinae and Culicinae.
7. Give 2 interesting facts about mosquitoes.
Interesting facts about Mosquitoes are -
Mosquitoes can learn and remember what their hosts smell like - They can locate you wherever you go to bite you.
Mosquitoes have a brief span of life - Fortunately, you don’t need to worry about one mosquito becoming the bane of your existence causing itchy bites for eternity as these biting insects have a very short life span. It is estimated that mosquitoes live for not more than 2 months.