Nothing stops outdoor fun faster than itchy, red bites. With over 170 mosquito species in North America, it can get confusing keeping track of all of them. We’ve made a list of the four most common mosquitoes found in the United States.
All mosquitoes, regardless of their species, share a few characteristics. Mosquitoes have a thin body structure consisting of a head, thorax, and abdomen. Their six legs are long and thin. Mosquitoes have a feeding structure known as a proboscis. It includes a stylet, which is the piercing mouthpart. Adult mosquitoes feed on nectar from plants to get sugar. It provides enough nourishment for males and females to live. Only female mosquitoes bite you. They need the protein in blood to produce eggs, which they then lay in water. They continue to look for blood meals to produce more eggs. Though mosquitoes share basic traits, each species is unique. Check out what separates these species from each other.
These mosquitoes like to hang out in your home, thus their name! They’re known as the culex species, and there are two common home invaders—the northern and southern house mosquito.
What Do House Mosquitoes Look Like?
Northern house mosquitoes are light brown and can grow up to ¼ʺ. Their abdomens have long, pale bands on them. Southern house mosquitoes have brown bodies, but their heads are lighter than the rest of the body. These mosquitoes have white bands on their abdomen.
Where Are House Mosquitoes Found?
The northern house mosquito, culex pipiens, prefers temperate climates. You can find them in the northern United States, especially on the east coast. Southern house mosquitoes, culex quinquefasciatus, like tropic and subtropic areas and tend to stay in the southern United States. Culex species thrive in stagnant water, and they will lay clusters of eggs known as egg rafts.
Do House Mosquitoes Bite Humans?
Though house mosquitoes like avian hosts, they have no problem biting humans. Unlike other mosquitoes, they can overwinter and be active throughout the year. Keep your eye out for them around dusk and after dark since this is when they are most active.
Yellow Fever Mosquitoes
This mosquito belongs to the aedes family. The yellow fever mosquito, aedes aegypti, is native to Africa. However, it’s now considered one of the most widespread mosquito species.
What Do Yellow Fever Mosquitoes Look Like?
Yellow fever mosquitoes have a dark brown or black body with silver or white patterns. They range in size from 1/8ʺ-1/4ʺ.
Where Are Yellow Fever Mosquitoes Found?
This mosquito likes tropical or subtropical climates and typically breeds in warm weather. In the United States, they’re usually spotted in the south. When choosing a spot to lay eggs, they gravitate toward shaded and concealed areas with standing water. You are likely to see them in flowerpots and near swimming pools.
Do Yellow Fever Mosquitoes Bite Humans?
Yellow fever mosquitoes prefer human hosts, so you’ll want to make sure you protect yourself from them. Unlike other mosquitoes, they’re active throughout the day. They choose to feed before evening.
Asian Tiger Mosquitoes
A tiger is this mosquito’s spirit animal. The Asian tiger mosquito, aedes albopictus, gets its name from its appearance. Like the yellow fever mosquito, it belongs to the aedes family.
What Do Asian Tiger Mosquitoes Look Like?
The Asian tiger mosquito is known for its signature black and white striped body. These mosquitoes can grow between 1/8ʺ-1/4ʺ.
Where Are Asian Tiger Mosquitoes Found?
They’re originally from Southeast Asia, but they can now be found throughout the United States. However, they prefer warmer climates and are most common in southern parts of the United States. They lay eggs in standing water including in birdbaths and flowerpots. Though Asian tiger mosquitoes lay their eggs in water, the eggs can survive in dry conditions. Despite its wings, these mosquitoes aren’t strong fliers and won’t travel long distances.
Do Asian Tiger Mosquitoes Bite Humans?
Like the yellow fever mosquito, the Asian tiger mosquito feeds during the day. It chooses humans and other mammals as its host.
Anopheles mosquitoes include several different kinds of mosquitoes. One that is commonly found in the United States is the anopheles quadrimaculatus. These mosquitoes can be picky when it comes to water, which explains why they’re also known as marsh mosquitoes.
What Do Anopheles Mosquitoes Look Like?
The anopheles quadrimaculatus is a dark brown mosquito. It’s known for the four patches of scales found on its body. These mosquitoes stand out from the rest because of their resting position. Most mosquitoes rest with their stomach parallel to the ground. However, anopheles mosquitoes point their stomach upward when not in motion.
Where Are Anopheles Mosquitoes Found?
Unlike other mosquitoes, anopheles mosquitoes like their water to be clean. They tend to lay eggs in water that has a lot of vegetation. Marshes, swamps, and ponds are the perfect spots. The anopheles quadrimaculatus is found in the eastern United States, and large numbers have been spotted in southeastern states.
Do Anopheles Mosquitoes Bite Humans?
These mosquitoes bite humans. Mosquitoes in the anopheles family like to search for meals at dawn and dusk.
How to Get Rid of Mosquitoes
Mosquitoes are definitely a pest you want to avoid. Check out a few tips to help control a mosquito problem.
- Eliminate Standing Water: Since mosquitoes need water to lay eggs, removing this necessity will help keep them away from your home. Check for standing water in your yard and remove it. Repair or replace leaking spigots, pipes, or hoses. Replace water in pet bowls, birdbaths, and kiddie pools often.
- Seal Entry Points: It’s important to make sure mosquitoes can’t slip into your house. A small tear in a screen is all it takes to invite them into your home. Repair any damage to window and door screens. Check for cracks and seal any you find.
- Use a Plant-Based Insecticide: Sometimes you need help fighting mosquitoes. Our Mosquito & Tick Killer, Mosquito Fogger, and Natural Insect Repellent can help keep mosquitoes from bothering you. They are a more environmentally and family-friendly solution to kill and repel mosquitoes.
Nobody wants their outdoor fun cut short. That’s why it’s important to deter mosquitoes from hanging out in your yard. If mosquitoes are bugging you, check out our Maggie’s Farm Simply Effective™ mosquito control products.