The ubiquitous mosquito is an insect that is hard not to notice. There is no doubt that if you have not seen them, you have felt them — in the form of a usually itchy bite. Before a mosquito can grow up and make a meal out of you, the insect must go through four life cycles. The first life cycle begins with a mosquito egg. Although not a complicated process, mosquito eggs only hatch when the circumstances and environments are appropriate.
Mosquito eggs need water in order to hatch. While some mosquitoes prefer a direct water source (like ponds or sewer), other mosquitoes prefer damp grounds or soils that are close to water to serve as hatching grounds. When hatchlings emerge from the egg, nearby water sources are convenient for larva migration and sustenance.
Although you may associate mosquitoes with warm weather, these insects can actually hatch in just about any environment, including the Arctic. In warmer climates, eggs can hatch as early as February. Although eggs hatch within a short amount of time of being lain, the eventual adults could take months to make an appearance; mosquitoes have the ability to hibernate for months.
Based on the particular type of mosquito, of which there are more than 2500 species , these insects typically hatch within two days of the adult mosquito laying eggs. The numbers of hatchlings vary based on the specific mosquito species. Particular types of mosquitoes, such as the Culex species, hatch from rafts in simultaneous groups of 100 or more. Other types of mosquitoes, such as the Anopheles species, hatch from individual eggs.
Given a couple of days, under the right conditions, mosquito eggs can hatch very quickly.
“The Life Cycle of the Mosquito.” www.mosquitoes.org — The Alameda County Mosquito Abatement District. N.p., n.d. Web. 9 Aug. 2012. http://www.mosquitoes.org/LifeCycle.html
“Mosquito Control FAQ.” Central Mass. Mosquito Control. N.p., n.d. Web. 9 Aug. 2012. http://www.cmmcp.org/faq.htm .