The Asian tiger mosquito is here to stay
The Asian tiger mosquito (scientifically: Aedes albopictus, meaning “The white-painted unpleasant one”) is a day-active and aggressive mosquito that has been spreading across the United States since the mid-eighties, and it continues to do so. This mosquito usually lives closely associated with humans in the urban and suburban environment and is a significant nuisance in many communities. It can also be the vector of a number of diseases. Below, you will find a description of the Asian tiger mosquito, its biology, its life cycle and the threat it may pose.
“Albopictus” means white-painted
The Asian tiger mosquito is a small mosquito, with sizes ranging between 1/10 and 1/3 inch. The animal is black with bright white marks (hence albopictus, white-painted). A single white line that begins on the head and continues down the back of the central part of the body (the thorax) is the most conspicuous characteristic, along with the white markings on the legs.
From dawn to dusk
Unlike other nuisance mosquitoes, the Asian tiger mosquito is primarily active during the day, including dawn and dusk. In many communities, it has become the major pest mosquito and, due to its unusually aggressive biting, has taken the joy out of spending time in the yard and garden. Adult tiger mosquitoes tend to rest near the ground in vegetation and readily bite if disturbed. Although Aedes albopictus is usually an outdoor biting mosquito, it has also been collected biting indoors. It is fairly common for tiger mosquitoes to follow people indoors when doors are left open. The mosquito flies close to the ground and does not fly in strong winds. It tends to have a short flight range and remains within a few hundred meters of their larval habitats.