In the US, they transmit heart worms to dogs and cats, spread encephalitis, and the West Nile virus.
Thus far, we handle it through spraying ourselves with DEET, and give our furry friends various heart worm preventatives. It's not fool proof. Some dogs are sensitive to the active substances in heart worm medications, and mosquitoes are learning to ignore DEET.
Female mosquitoes suck blood to obtain protein needed to produce eggs, and they can smell a person from over 100 feet away. The new approach to mosquito control is to impair their sense of smell. They can't bite us if they can't find us!
Scientists have found chemical compounds that could be incorporated in clothing, lotions, and bug spray in the future. The research seems promising. Sciencedaily reports, "If you put your hand in a cage of mosquitoes where we have released dome of these inhibitors, almost all just sit on the back wall and don't even recognize the hand is in there."
~ Maria Sadowski ~