How Long Do Mosquitoes Live [Interesting Findings]

Do you often hear that dreaded buzzing sound when you are in your yard or patio?

Are you interested in learning about how long mosquitoes live for? Well then you’ll be pleased to know the short answer is, not for very long!

In this article we will be looking into the life cycle of the mosquito, what mosquitoes eat (it’s not just blood), and how long mosquitoes live for.

What’s in this guide?

Where do mosquitoes live?

The Mosquito Life Cycle

First stage: Mosquito Eggs

Second stage: Mosquito Larva

Third stage: Mosquito pupa

Fourth stage: Adult Mosquitoes

Mosquito Food sources

So how long do mosquitoes live?

Introduction

Some pests make little to no noise before biting a human. That can’t be said for mosquitoes, however. I’m sure you’ve heard that annoying high-pitched buzz of a mosquito flying by your head. I would imagine just reading this, you’ll be able to relate to this sound. 

Mosquitoes are annoying, but their bites are equally annoying and often result in an itchy nightmare. 

That’s why people spend a lot of time researching ways to keep mosquitoes away from their yards.

When you’re trying to eliminate any pest, it often helps to know some background information about it such as it’s lifespan, life cycle, and habitat.

Where do Mosquitoes live? 

Mosquitoes like wet areas, especially stagnant water that has green pond life floating on the surfaces. 

If it’s rained recently and you’ve got plenty of water logged areas or puddles in your yard, this is a perfect breeding ground.

Start to think along the lines of any areas which allow water to build up over long periods of time: a swimming pool in your yard that hasn’t been cleaned in sometime; empty plant pots that collect water; barrels or BBQ’s that haven’t been used in years; birdbaths that haven’t been cleaned. 

You get the idea. 

Mosquitoes don’t like fast running water, as it puts their eggs and larva in danger. It also causes problems with the growth of one of their main food sources: algae. 

The Mosquito Life Cycle

Mosquitoes pass through four stages in their life cycle: egg, larva, pupa and adult. The first three of these stages are in water. 

First stage: Mosquito Eggs

Before a female lays eggs, she must have a blood meal. This allows the eggs to grow and develop fully. It also happens to be the only reason a female mosquito bites a human or animal. 

Once the female mosquito has found a blood meal, she will then look to lay her eggs in a moist area often prone to flooding, or where water is stagnant. 

These mosquito eggs may hatch after a few days of being flooded, but fully developed larvae may stay within the eggs for up to a year depending on conditions.

Second stage: Mosquito Larva

Once the mosquito eggs hatch they are known as larva. These larvae, otherwise known as wigglers or wrigglers, live within the water. 

These larvae are filter feeders: they ingest microscopic bacteria by vibrating their mouth brushes, collecting matter and small organisms from the water. 

Third stage: Mosquito pupa

Mosquito pupae are normally quite active and are often referred to as “tumblers” due to their speedy tumbling like movement. Mosquito pupae live underneath the water’s surface, as they are able to breath through two respiratory horns. 

They don’t feed at this stage of the mosquito life cycle, and normally spend 2 to 7 days at this stage before transforming into an adult mosquito. 

Fourth stage: Adult Mosquitoes 

The final stage of the mosquito life cycle. Most species of mosquitoes go from an egg to an adult in around 5 days, but it can take up to 40. 

Adult mosquitoes are tiny flying insects made up of a small head,  two antennae, a proboscis, two large eyes, a thorax, a pair of wings, and six legs. 

Adult mosquitoes come out of the pupa with two main things on their agenda: they want to breed and feed, normally in that order.

Male mosquitoes can live up to 10 days, but on average between 5 and 7 days. 

Adult mosquitoes tend to mate a few days after transforming into an adult. The male mosquitoes form large swarms, normally at dusk, and the female mosquitoes fly into the swarms to mate.

Male mosquitoes continue to mate as many times as they can until they die, whereas female mosquitoes tend to mate once. The lifecycle of the average mosquito tends to take up to 10 days.

Female mosquitoes produce one batch of eggs for every time they bite you, and some mosquitoes can lay up to 200 eggs. 

Scary thought right?

Mosquito Food sources

Male mosquitoes like to feed on sugary fluids and nectar, and do not feed on blood. So when you hear that buzz around your head followed swiftly by a bite, that’ll be a female mosquito draining your blood.

Female mosquitoes begin hunting as soon as the sun goes down, searching for warm-blooded hosts such as humans, dogs, cats, and wildlife. 

Lactic acid from our sweat combined with carbon dioxide which we exhale makes a delicious aroma which attracts the mosquitoes.

Mosquitoes are capable of picking up our scent from up to 100 feet away. They also can sense us moving and our body heat, allowing them to hone in on their target.

Summary

So there we have it. Female mosquitoes can live up to a month, whereas the male lifespan is much shorter. 

Mosquito prevention tip: To keep mosquitoes out of your garden, remove any stagnant water (think along the lines of swimming pool covers, clogged gutters, and plant pots). These are the ideal places that mosquitoes will seek out to lay their eggs.

Other Mosquito Guides

We have several other in-depth mosquito related pest guides that are able to help control your pest problem.

Ronald has 25 years of pest control experience under his belt. He scrutinizes each pest control method, product and process. 

Read more here.

Most Popular Articles