Asian Tiger Mosquito

Aedes albopictus

The Basics

Body Length: 2 to 10 mm

Leg Length: 7-8 mm

Wingspan: 7-8 mm

Life Expectancy: A few days to a few weeks

  • Called a tiger mosquito because of its black and white color pattern which includes a white stripe running down the center of its head and back with white bands on its legs
  • Males are about 20% smaller than females

HOW DOES THE Asian Tiger Mosquito INTERACT WITH OTHER ORGANISMS IN ITS ENVIRONMENT? WHAT IS ITS NICHE?

In the Asian Tiger Mosquito's natural habitat it acts as a secondary consumer. It is known to eat things such as sambar deer, lime trees, cashew trees, etc. In the U.S. the food web changes slightly they are still primary consumers but are then know to eat things such as blackberries, magnolia flowers, etc.

Their niche is that as secondary consumers they not only prey but are preyed on by things such as spiders and big brown bats.

Why is the Asian Tiger Mosquito Invasive?HOW DID IT BECOME INVASIVE? HOW DID THE CARRYING CAPACITY OF ITS ENVIRONMENT CHANGE? HOW MANY ARE THERE COMPARED TO PREVIOUS NUMBERS?

The Asian Tiger Mosquito is invasive because it was introduced to the U.S. through tire casings that needed recapping and has spread to over 20 states since 1985. Because of the fact that Asian Tiger Mosquito's only need at least 1/4th inch of water to breed the Asian Tiger Mosquito's are quickly spreading.

The carrying capacity has increased as the Asian Tiger Mosquito finds more places to breed.

As the Asian Tiger Mosquito finds more places to breed and invades more places their number is increasing at an alarming rate.

WHAT IS THE FUTURE PROGNOSIS?

The Asian Tiger Mosquito is expected to spread to more states throughout the U.S.

HOW CAN HUMANS HELP? CALL TO ACTION?

Humans can help in many ways, I found a list onhttp://www.idph.state.il.us/envhealth/pctigermosquito.htm of what they ask people to do in Illinois to help. It includes -

  • Remove any water-filled containers like old tires, food containers and buckets from your yard.
  • Keep mosquitoes from breeding in bird baths, pet water dishes and plastic wading pools by emptying them at least once a week.
  • Roof gutters should be kept clean of fallen leaves and other debris so that water does not collect in them.
  • Neighborhood residents should work together to eliminate breeding sites like abandoned cars, old machinery, drums and other junk in vacant lots.
  • Report piles of discarded tires or other accumulations of water-holding junk to local health officials.
  • Businesses should cover tires, store them indoors or treat them with an insecticide labeled by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for control of mosquito larvae.