The University of Helsinki found a new species of mosquito in Finland. This news comes just in time for Scandinavian sun-lovers to put on their favorite shorts.
The newly found species, called Culex modestus, is known to carry the West Nile virus in southern Europe, but experts say the spread of West Nile is unlikely in Finland. The report enthusiastically states that this new species is the 44th mosquito species found in Finland and the northernmost record of the species in Europe.
“Finns shouldn’t be concerned about this mosquito discovery at this point. To date, no infections acquired in Finland have been discovered in humans or horses, but this finding is a reminder that we should be aware of which mosquito species are here,” said researcher Lorna Culverwel.
There are 110 trillion mosquitoes on the planet, and 8 billion people for them to feast on. With that many hungry mosquitos, it is likely there are still more mosquito-related discoveries left to be made, possibly including entirely new species that are hiding and biting in secret.
Mosquitoes are best known for their itchy bites and ability to spread disease, but there is a lot more to know about these unpopular pests.
If you’ve ever felt like a whole crowd of mosquitos appears out of nowhere, it’s because some types of mosquitoes lay 100 eggs at a time, so they pretty much do appear out of seemingly nowhere when they hatch. Some mosquitoes’ entire lifecycle takes just 7-10 days. Talk about growing up fast.
Luckily not all mosquitoes feast on blood. Male and female mosquitoes feed on nectar and plant sap, but female mosquitoes also bite animals (including humans) because they need the protein from blood to produce their eggs.
Unfortunately for people who are mosquito magnets, it’s almost time for the full Buck Moon on July 3rd, the year’s first supermoon. According to a study about the effects of moonlight on the flight activity of mosquitoes, a full moon can increase mosquito activity by up to 500%.
These seemingly evil blood suckers may be humans’ enemies, but mosquitos are actually pretty cool, if you can look past the biting. Mosquitos are ancient and have been around since the Triassic Period, about 400 million years ago.
They fly really slowly, clocking just 1-1.5 MPH on a good day. They use infrared radiation as well as sight to detect warm bodies, which has helped them survive for so long on Earth.
Are you dreading the mosquitoes this summer?