Do Mosquitoes Bite?
Yes! Mosquitoes can and will bite when they require a blood meal. Female mosquitoes use their proboscis to pierce the skin and feed on blood. Mosquitoes don’t only bite humans, but also small birds and mammals. A mosquito bite can result in marks or rashes on your skin.
While rare in Georgia and Tennessee, mosquito bites are known for their ability to transmit very dangerous diseases. Even though most mosquito bites do not come with the risk of getting a disease, it’s still important to learn about the risks associated.
Why Do Mosquitoes Bite People?
Unlike other biting pests, mosquitoes do not bite as a defense mechanism. They bite to retrieve the nutrients found in our blood, which are essential for the development of mosquito eggs. After a female mosquito bites you, it is able to then reproduce. Male mosquitoes, on the other hand, do not bite.
When a female mosquito “bites”, it is actually piercing your skin with its needle-like proboscis. The proboscis contains two tubes, unlike just the one found in a hypodermic syringe. One of these tubes injects saliva that contains a mix of chemicals to reduce pain, thin your blood and prevent it from clotting. The other is used to suck up the blood. Blood is not transmitted back into you during the bite process.
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What Does a Mosquito Bite Look Like?
Mosquito bites most frequently occur on exposed parts of the body. The most common mosquito bite symptoms include:
- Pinkish red bumps that are itchy will form just minutes after the mosquito pierces the skin.
- Over the next day or two, these bumps can become redder and darken.
- The bump from a mosquito bite is less than ½ inch across.
- The most common mosquito bite symptom is itching. Scratching at the bites can worsen the symptoms and cause bruising or rashes.
- In severe cases, fever, severe headaches, nausea, and fatigue can be a sign of a serious problem. Always consult a medical professional when experiencing these symptoms.
Will Mosquitoes Bite My Pet?
Although mosquitoes are mostly known for biting people, they will gladly bite small animals as well. Cats and long-haired dogs are less likely to get bitten due to their thick coat of hair. However, they can be bitten on their nose and ears. Mosquitoes will target the bellies and underarms of animals to feed on. In addition to giving your pets irritating bite marks, mosquitoes can transmit diseases to animals just like they can to humans. If you are noticing symptoms of a mosquito bite on your pets, it’s important to take them to see your veterinarian.
Do Mosquitoes Bite? in Atlanta & Knoxville Metros and Surrounding Areas
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