Did Ya Know?

What Exactly Attracts Mosquitoes?

Summer time is officially here and that means time spent with family outside.  BBQ’s, lawn games, and lounging in the pool.  Unfortunately, it also means the arrival of a pesky, uninvited guest—the common mosquito.  Intent on ruining all the fun, they are always making their presence known by buzzing around you and more often than not biting you as well.

But, why are mosquitos attracted to some individuals more than others?  There are a few factors that determine their attraction that you probably never even thought of.

Image: The Globe And Mail

Many mistakenly believe that mosquitoes are attracted to the “sweet” smell of their blood.  This is actually not true.  Mosquitoes are attracted to the carbon dioxide that you emit on exhale.  When you have been exercising, you emit more carbon dioxide, which sends them into a frenzy.

Another little-known fact is that male mosquitoes do not bite, they do not feed on blood.  It is the females that are the ones that bite.  When they bite you, and suck your blood, they use the protein to develop their eggs.  After they have fed on you, they can lay anywhere from 100-400 eggs.

Image: Maxim

Do you like the occasional beer while relaxing outside?  Well, you may want to rethink that.  When you down a beer, it changes the chemistry of your skin.  The change is liking a homing beacon that lures the mosquitoes in.

Finally, they absolute love smelly feet.  Scientists have found that smelly feet can be up to ten times more enticing to mosquitoes than the scent of Limburger cheese.

Just a few things to keep in mind when you are enjoying the great outdoors, and do not want to be pestered by what are sure to be uninvited party crashers.