Super-sized mosquitoes as big as quarters which can bite through clothing are headed to Florida ‘in large numbers’ this summer
By Katie Davies
PUBLISHED: 16:21 EST, 6 March 2013 | UPDATED: 17:04 EST, 6 March 2013
Mega-mosquitoes which are the size of quarters are expected to take over areas of Florida ‘in large numbers’ this summer, scientists have warned.
The special breed of the nuisance bug, which can be 20 times bigger than common menacing Asian tiger mosquitoes, are described as ‘notoriously aggressive’.
They were handed the perfect breeding ground by last year’s tropical storms, according to scientists at the University of Florida, so are coming to a town near you.
‘Because of the events last year, and the eggs laid, we can expect large numbers of these mosquitoes again,’ Entomologist Phil Kaufman, an associate professor with the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, told the Gainsville Sun.
‘It is quite capable of biting through my shirt.
‘We suggest people wear long-sleeve pants and shirts. Just doing that may not be enough for this type of mosquito; you’re going to have use one of the insect repellants to dissuade them from landing.’
‘The bite really hurts, I can attest to that,’ he told science site phys.org.
Psorophora ciliata, or Gallinipper mosquitoes as they are commonly known, have half inch long bodies and the same black-white color pattern of the more common Asian Tiger Mosquito with a wingspan of 6-7 millimeters.
Quarter-Sized Mosquitoes Really Exist
Florida was invaded by the gallinipper last summer after Tropical Storm Debbie. The case is likely to be the same this year, University of Florida entomologist Phil Kaufman said in a statement.
The whopper of a bug has an equally big bite, which can really hurt when its mouth pierces the skin, says Kaufman. As with other mosquitoes, only the females bite and feed on blood.
- Super-sized mosquitoes as big as quarters which can bite through clothing are headed to Florida (countdowntozerotime.org)
- Huge, aggressive mosquito may be abundant in #Florida this summer, UF/IFAS expert warns (browardnetonline.com)
- Large, aggressive mosquito coming (news4jax.com)
- Quarter-Sized Mosquitoes Really Exist (businessinsider.com)
- UF Researcher: Mega mosquitoes set to invade Central Fla. (countdowntoeternityblog.wordpress.com)
- Mega mosquitoes to invade Central Fla. (clickorlando.com)
- Dengue may rise if rival mosquitoes don’t mate (futurity.org)