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Do all mosquitoes bite?

Learn which mosquitoes will and will not bite.

Not all mosquitoes are out to drink blood. [©Jupiter Images, 2009]
©Jupiter Images, 2009
Not all mosquitoes are out to drink blood.

Anyone who's ever taken a walk through the wetlands or picnicked near a lake knows that the answer is yes: All mosquitoes bite, as frequently as possible, preferably in places where the swelled-up skin will be hardest for you to scratch.

Or so it would seem.

Actually, it's only the lady mosquitoes that are out for blood. The male mosquito would be unable to pierce your skin even if he tried.

The gentleman mosquito has a simple proboscis -- a sort of eating tube -- that lets him lap up plant juices and other vegetarian delights.

Meanwhile, the proboscis of the female mosquito is endowed with a variety of needle-like and toothed structures that help her penetrate skin and feast on sweet, sweet blood.

Without blood, the female mosquito's eggs would not reach maturity. So as annoying as those mosquito bites may be, you can at least take comfort in the fact that you're playing a part in the great circle of life. Because without mosquitoes, where would we be?

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