When you get bitten by a mosquito, you probably don’t automatically wonder which species you’ve been bitten by. Most people don’t. We tend to just lump them all together as “mosquitos.” But, different species of mosquitos spread different diseases, so it’s not a totally bad idea to know which ones spread what and what differentiates them. Not all mosquitos are created equal.
The culex tarsalis mosquito is the main culprit behind the spread of West Nile in the Western United States. They have a rounded abdomen and have a light band of color around their proboscis.
If you catch malaria, you were most likely bitten by an anopheles quadrimaculatus mosquito. They are dark brown in color and tend to jut their abdomen up in the air, tilting their head down, when they rest on surfaces. They tend to feed in the evening, and prefer to munch on humans and other mammals. They aren’t as much of a problem for you to deal with around your house because they like to lay their eggs in freshwater streams, ponds, and lakes.
The straw-colored anopheles freeborni mosquito generally come out at dusk, and you may notice that their bellies turn red and swell up after they’ve eaten their fill of your tasty blood. These pests are more common in rural areas, and lay their eggs in sunlight pools and ponds.
What species of mosquito do you think you are usually bitten by? How can you tell?