Mosquitoes drink blood because they need it vitally
In spring, summer and autumn we are annoyed with mosquitoes. Probably all of us are infuriated by their annoying food at night, bites and caused by itching on the skin. Let's tell the secret - in fact, these insects are not created just to annoy people. They are useful in nature because their larvae clean fresh water, and adults pollinate plants and are fodder for other insects and even birds. At the moment, science knows about the existence of 3600 species of mosquitoes and some of them are quite without human blood. But the so-called "urban mosquitoes" of the Culex pipiens species need human bloodbecause without it they cannot reproduce. So why do mosquitoes bite people and what happens in their bodies when human blood comes in? Let's get to the bottom of this.
Every person should remember that only female mosquitoes drink blood. Males can safely live by eating only floral nectar. Females also sometimes drink nectar, but the protein contained in it is not enough for the formation of eggs, necessary for procreation. So they start attacking us and biting us, because human blood is very rich. Nutritional properties are full not only of human blood, but also of the blood of other mammals. Therefore, mosquitoes affect not only us, but also dogs, cats, cows and many other creatures.
Thanks to the cats - some of them are good at hunting mosquitoes
The proteins in the blood are digested inside female mosquitoes and converted into organic compounds called amino acids. They, in turn, play an important role in the production of eggs,without which insects can not get pregnant and lay eggs. When the female searches for the victim and drinks his blood, she has already "slept" with the males. Having collected enough proteins, they wait 2-3 days for eggs to ripen and lay them on the surface of the water. After that, most females die, and the surviving specimens are again taken to annoy us with their squeaking and bites. They do not need to mate with males a second time, because their organisms retain a sufficient supply of sperm.
Some species of mosquitoes are able to reproduce even without blood supply. The fact that their larvae from the first days begin to eat bacteria and detritus,that is, caught in the nature of dead tissues. The larvae of the Toxorhynchites mosquito do eat similar creatures. But all of the above is a high-protein food. So why would these mosquitoes look for a source of blood and risk their lives? They understand that it is pointless, that's why they live quite a chorus.
Toxorhynchites mosquitoes are very large
Some "urban mosquitoes" also have the ability to do without human blood. This skill proved to be vital for them, because some groups have to spend their lives in half-flooded basements of houses. These waters contain a sufficient amount of organic matter and mosquitoes stock up on protein at the larva season. So the first clutch of females can make on their own, but then they have to look for human blood.
It is believed that mosquitoes can smell a person for 30 meters. They don't bite all people indiscriminately because they have their own taste. According to the data, mosquitoes most prefer people with the first blood group. They are thought to be bitten twice as often as people with a second blood type. This means that in most cases we attract mosquitoes to ourselves. Also, these insects are very attracted to the lactic acidcontained on our skin. In large quantities it is formed after consumption of dairy products, soy and pickled vegetables. And if a person is also physically active and often sweats - flies swoop on him in droves.
Are you often bitten by mosquitoes? So you're very much in their taste!
Some will find it hard to believe, but tiny mosquitoes influenced history so much that they determined the fate of entire empires. Some scientists believe that in the history of blood-sucking insects have destroyed almost half of humanity. According to statistics, between 1980 and 2010, between 1,200,000 and 2,780,000 people died each year from mosquito-borne malaria. Malaria has killed more people than any other disease. More on this wrote my colleague Lyubov Sokovikova . I recommend reading!