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Mosquitoes won't take the hint when you put out a bug zapper and a few citronella candles just before your yard party. If you have a dozen guests over, the mosquitoes will be drawn to a dozen parties of their own! You really need to set up your backyard mosquito control in the spring, when mosquitoes are just beginning to plan your summer for you.

Backyard Mosquito Control, by the Numbers

To really understand mosquitoes, you need to get a tiny bit technical - but we can make that happen without too much pain.

There are an estimated 3,000 species of mosquitoes in the world, and a little under 200 in the United States. When scientists name a species, they give it a two piece name (genus & species), as they did when they named humans homo sapiens. Still with me? Great!

The mosquitoes commonly known to transmit diseases fall into one of the following three genera (that's the plural of genus 🙂)

Culex pipiens mosquito distribution in the US
United States map of Aedes Vexans habitat

In all cases, the female mosquito needs the protein from your blood for their eggs, so her bite is nothing personal.

Photo credits:

Maps of Culex and Aedes mosquitoes: Kalluri, Satya; Gilruth, Peter; Rogers, David; Szczur, Martha (2015): Maps Showing the Potential Distribution of Four Species of Mosquitoes in the United States. PLOS Pathogens. Figure. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.ppat.0030116.g002

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