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mosquito

mosquito (məskē´tō), small, long-legged insect of the order Diptera, the true flies. The females of most species have piercing and sucking mouth parts and apparently they must feed at least once upon mammalian blood before their eggs can develop properly. The males may have beaks, or probosces, but cannot pierce, and they feed upon fruit and plant juices. The female produces the characteristic whining sound by vibrating thin horny membranes on the thorax. Mosquitoes have become adapted to extremes of climate and are found far north of the Arctic Circle, where they winter as larvae frozen in the ice.

Mosquito eggs are laid singly or glued together to form rafts, usually in stagnant water in ponds, pools, open containers, and other aquatic habitats—the particular type of habitat depending on the species. The aquatic larvae, or wrigglers, pass through four larval stages, feeding on microscopic animal and plant life. Except in the genus Anopheles, the wriggler has an air tube near the end of the abdomen and makes frequent trips to the surface to use it as a supplement to the gills. The pupa, or tumbler, shaped like a question mark, takes no food but surfaces often to breathe through air tubes on its thorax. One method of mosquito control is the spreading of oily substances on infested water, which prevents access to air and suffocates the pupae. In summer the life cycle may take only two weeks, resulting in several generations a year in some species.

During blood meals the females may either acquire or transmit various disease organisms. Several species of Anopheles mosquitoes, recognizable by their tilted resting position, carry the protozoan parasites that cause malaria; species of the genus Aedes transmit the viruses responsible for yellow fever, jungle yellow fever, and dengue fever; and in the S United States and in the tropics, members of the genus Culex, to which the common house mosquito belongs, are vectors of filariasis, the infection by a filarial worm that causes elephantiasis, and human encephalitis.

Dragonflies, damselflies, and several insectivorous birds are the natural enemies of the adults; the wrigglers are eaten in large quantities by small fishes and aquatic insects. Control of these major insect pests by other than natural means poses many problems; the long-range harmful effects of many insecticides are very serious, and swamp drainage tends to upset the balance of nature in addition to eliminating the mosquito.

Mosquitoes are classified in the phylum Arthropoda, class Insecta, order Diptera, family Culicidae.

See bulletins of the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture; study by A. Spielman and M. D'Antonio (2001).

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Mosquito Coast

Mosquito Coast or Mosquitia (məskē´tēə, mōskētē´ä), region, east coast of Nicaragua and Honduras. The name is derived from the Miskito, the indigenous inhabitants and remnants of the Chorotega. Never exactly delimited, the region is a belt c.40 mi (60 km) wide extending from the San Juan River north into NE Honduras. It is sultry and swampy, rising to low hills in the west. Lobstering has replaced banana cultivation as the major economic activity, but most inhabitants depend on subsistence farming.

In the early colonial period, English and Dutch buccaneers preyed on Spanish shipping from there, and English loggers exploited the forest. England established a protective kingdom at Bluefields in 1678. Slaves from Jamaica were brought in to increase the labor supply. In 1848, the British took San Juan del Norte to offset U.S. interest in a transisthmian route to California. Nicaragua protested the seizure. The Clayton-Bulwer Treaty (1850) between the United States and Great Britain checked British expansion, but relinquishment of the coast was delayed until a separate treaty was concluded with Nicaragua (1860), which established the autonomy of the so-called Mosquito Kingdom.

In 1894, José Santos Zelaya ended the territory's anomalous position by forcibly incorporating it into Nicaragua. The northern part was awarded to Honduras in 1960 by the International Court of Justice, thus ending a long-standing dispute. The Nicaraguan portion was officially given partial autonomy in 1987, including control over local natural resources, but little real change has resulted and the area remains impoverished.

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Mosquito

Mosquito

Order: Diptera (2 winged insects)

Life Cycle: complete

Four Stage Metamorphosis: egg, larva, pupa, and adult

Mosquitoes sit with their hind legs in the air. (Midges sit with their forelegs raised up in the air.)

Larva

Body Description

Larva is similar to the midge larva except they have 10 segments instead of 9.

Pupa

Body Description

Mosquito pupa is similar to the midge except they have a respiratory tube and have a 2-3 day life span at the surface film.

Adult

Body Description

Adult mosquitoes are like the midge except the female has a needle to bite. Their body colors are: black white, and tan white.

Female
Male

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mosquito

mos·qui·to / məˈskētō/ • n. (pl. -toes or -tos) a slender long-legged fly with aquatic larvae. The bite of the bloodsucking female can transmit a number of serious diseases including malaria and encephalitis. • Culex, Anopheles, and other genera, family Culicidae. DERIVATIVES: mos·qui·to·ey / məˈskētəwē/ adj.

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mosquito

mosquito Long-legged, slender-winged insect found throughout the world. The female sucks blood from warm-blooded animals. Some species carry the parasites of diseases, including malaria, yellow fever, dengue, viral encephalitis, and filariasis. The larvae are aquatic. Adult length: 3–9mm (0.12–0.36in) Family Culicidae.

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mosquito

mosquito (mos-kee-toh) n. a small winged bloodsucking insect belonging to a large group – the Diptera. Female mosquitoes transmit the parasites responsible for several major infectious diseases, such as malaria. See Anopheles, Aëdes.

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Mosquito

Mos·qui·to • n. (pl. -tos) & adj. variant spelling of Miskito.

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mosquito

mosquito XVI. — Sp., Pg. mosquito, dim. of mosca :- L. musca fly (see MIDGE).

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mosquito

mosquito See CULICIDAE.

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mosquito

mosquitobateau, chateau, gateau, gelato, mulatto, plateau •de facto, ipso facto •alto •canto, Esperanto, manteau, panto, portmanteau •antipasto, impasto - •agitato, Ambato, castrato, esparto, inamorato, legato, moderato, obbligato (US obligato), ostinato, pizzicato, rubato, staccato, tomato, vibrato, Waikato •contralto •allegretto, amaretto, amoretto, Canaletto, cornetto, falsetto, ghetto, larghetto, libretto, Loreto, Orvieto, Soweto, stiletto, Tintoretto, vaporetto, zucchetto •perfecto, recto •cento, cinquecento, divertimento, lento, memento, pimiento, portamento, Risorgimento, Sacramento, Sorrento, Trento •manifesto, pesto, presto •concerto •Cato, Plato, potato •Benito, bonito, burrito, coquito, graffito, Hirohito, incognito, Ito, magneto, Miskito, mosquito, Quito, Tito, veto •ditto • in flagrante delicto • mistletoe •pinto, Shinto •tiptoe •Callisto, fritto misto •cogito • Felixstowe • Sillitoe

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