At this point, science has proven the fact that mosquitoes are attracted to certain types of people more than they are others. Which makes it quite difficult for effective mosquito control.
With that being sad, we have all had those nights where, while we may get bitten by seemingly every mosquito in close proximity, these pests seem to completely ignore others nearby. This leads to the question: why are mosquitoes more attracted to some people than others?
The answer is a complex one, as there are many reasons for a mosquito to become attracted to a human and their blood. It is important to gain an understanding of certain characteristics we may possess that might play a huge part when it comes to making a mosquito target us. These characteristics include Ocentol, color, heat, mosquito diet, and sweat and all determine how attractive we truly appear to a mosquito. As the Atlanta mosquito control experts, we want to ensure our customers are fully educated on just what a mosquito is attracted to when it comes to deciding their meal.
Alcohol Levels Attract Mosquitoes
Each person has different levels of a specific alcohol, known as Octenol, which is present in a person’s breath and sweat. Octenol has been proven to attract not only mosquitoes but other types of biting pests and insects as well.
The higher the level of Octenol that is secreted from sweat glands in your body, the simpler it is for a dangerous mosquito to find you in a crowd. Composed of different sequences of Linoleic acid, which is combined in order to form the alcohol in your body, Octenol can even be used in biopesticides — according to the EPA — due to its attractive nature to biting insects.
Heat and Color Attracts Mosquitoes
In addition to alcohols that are secreted through a person’s sweat, mosquitoes are also attracted to both dark colors and heat.
Color and heat are connected because when you’re wearing a certain color on a sunny day, this can significantly affect your temperature. For instance, when you wear dark clothing, this will absorb more of the heat from the sun than yellow or white garments. Mosquitoes also have the ability to see darker colors more easily as well.
How a Mosquito’s Diet Plays a Role
Most folks think mosquitoes survive only on blood, however, a major portion of their diet, in fact, consists of plant nectar, which is a sugary solution that has a sweet smell and is often mimicked by perfume.
As a result of this, it is extremely important to remember that in addition to smelling good to the people around you, cologne and perfumes can also make you smell delicious to a biting pest such as a mosquito.
Due to the increased level of concern about mosquito-borne illnesses, it has become absolutely essential for people to understand how mosquitoes determine who to bite. Increased cases of Zika and West Nile virus remind everyone that we must utilize all the information and effective mosquito control techniques available in order to protect ourselves (and our loved ones) from the world’s most deadly animal.