Mosquitoes belong to the order Diptera – a large order meaning (two -winged) with many thousands of species; and the family of flies call Culicida.
The adults have large heads, compound eyes and a pair of antennae which is about three times as long as the head , are somewhat hairy in the female and quite bushy in the male, this difference provides a ready means of distinguishing between the sexes with the naked eye, these insects have a very complex life cycle, the immature stage is purely aquatic, and the adult stage is terrestrial.
Mosquitoes have four life stages: egg, larva, pupa and adult. The entire life cycle from egg to adult takes approximately 8 to 10 days. During the life cycle the male and female will feed on nectar and plant fluids.
On average a female mosquito will live two to three weeks, but the male lifespan is much shorter; the mosquito mates within 48 hours and the female mosquito only mates once in her lifetime, as she is able to store the sperm in sacs within her body and fertilise subsequent batches of eggs herself. The female mosquito requires a protein source of a blood meal for her egg development and uses her sensory organs which can detect body smell carbon dioxide, warmth and moisture emanating to distinguish the host.
Mosquitoes can be found in every type of climatic region of the world from the arctic to the tropics. Depending on the species, they can be found breeding in water, from heavily polluted water to clean water, including small collections of water in tin cans, old car tyres, pools and streams.
Distributions have increased and aided by transport systems such as boats and aircrafts, species have been introduced to new territories in this way, transmitting tropical diseases such as Dengue Fever and Ross River fever.
The larva habits can be controlled by removing receptacles containing water, ensuring drainage channels run freely and draining standing-water from building sites, earthworks etc., will contribute to reducing the problem.
Adult mosquitoes can be controlled indoors by using an aerosol; the biting nuisance may be minimized using repellents, treated bed nets or mosquito coils. In outdoor situations the use of products such as Aqua-K Othrine® from Bayer, can be used through a ULV fogger to control adult mosquitos.
Key Features of Aqua K-Othrine include:
- Contains synthetic pyrethroid (2% w/w deltamethrin) in a unique EW formulation
- Primarily based on water with built-in FFAST anti-evaporant technology (Film Forming Aqueous Spray technology).
- Low environmental impact and high level of safety in use
- Highly effective and registered for use on mosquitoes, flies, cockroaches, spiders and stored product pests
- Very low rates of application
- Biodegradable – no environmental accumulation
- Dilutes with water
- On the list of WHO prequalified vector control products.
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