What do male mosquitoes eat?

In this brief guide, we will address the query, “What do male mosquitoes eat?” We will also discuss why male mosquitoes can’t suck blood and why female mosquitoes feed on human blood. Moreover, we will also talk about whether all mosquitoes transmit diseases and whether they help in pollination or not.

What do male mosquitoes eat?

Unlike female mosquitoes, males don’t feed on blood; they eat the plant juices from nectar, plant sap, or honeydew as a meal for necessary protein. The stinger of a male mosquito’s mouth is not strong enough to suck blood from the host body due to which they are unable to feed on blood and have to get nourishment from sugar.

Whereas female mosquitoes feed on host blood piercing through their strong proboscis for various vital nutrients to lay eggs. If a proper amount of blood is not obtained by females from the host, mosquitoes can’t produce eggs after mating.

Since male mosquitoes don’t feed blood they are not responsible for transmitting diseases like malaria and dengue, females are the ones responsible. Male mosquitoes are harmless to humans but are equally irritating to humans producing sounds like female mosquitoes. 

Why can’t male mosquitoes suck blood?

The stinger of a male mosquito’s mouth is not strong enough to suck blood from the host body, so they cannot suck blood. Since they can’t pierce human tissue to suck blood they depend on sugar obtained from flower nectar and sap for energy and survival. 

The proboscis is a part of mosquitoes’ mouths responsible for piercing human skin and female mosquitoes use this part to suck blood. The proboscis present in males’ mouths is only strong enough to suck the sap and nectar of plants, not human skin, due to which they can’t have human blood.

Why do female mosquitoes feed on human blood?

Only female mosquitoes feed on human blood for various vital nutrients to lay eggs because of the strong proboscis in female mosquitoes that can pierce human skin they feed on human blood. However, male mosquitoes’ beak is not strong enough to pierce human skin so they don’t feed on human blood. If a proper amount of blood is not obtained by females from the host, mosquitoes can’t produce eggs after mating.

Blood is a good source of nutrition such as protein, iron, and amino acid which is essential for female mosquitoes to produce and lay eggs so they required human blood. Whereas males don’t have to reproduce so they only feed on plant sap and nectar to get energy.

Do all mosquitoes transmit diseases?

No, not all mosquitoes transmit diseases, only female mosquitoes are responsible for transmitting diseases. Since female mosquitoes feed on human blood they are responsible for transferring the majority of viruses and diseases. 

Malaria and dengue are one of the major mosquitoes-transmitted diseases. Among several species of female mosquitoes, only some of the mosquitoes can transmit disease, An. gambiae, An. funestus, and An. coluzzii are the ones with the majority of transmission. 

Male mosquitoes are not responsible for transmitting diseases since they only feed on plant sap and nectar for nourishment. However male mosquitoes are not directly responsible for disease transmission they contribute through mating. 

Research shows that mating causes a considerable impact on transmitting diseases, mated females have a significantly higher infection rate than virgin ones. 

Do mosquitoes help in pollination?

Yes, mosquitoes help in the pollination of a plant but only males. Since a primary source of food for male mosquitoes is sugar content obtained from the nectar they pollinate plants searching for food in different plants. Orchids are one of the major plants pollinated by mosquitoes and if mosquitoes get vanished from the environment they are the ones which will suffer the most. 

If you believe that mosquitos only have a negative effect on human life, you are wrong. They also have a beneficial impact as a source of pollination of the flower. Just like bees and butterflies, they transmit pollen from plant to plant making them fertilize. 

However, female mosquitoes do not play any role in pollination because they only feed on host blood for nourishment.

Conclusion

In this brief guide, we have addressed the query, “What do male mosquitoes eat?”. We have also discussed why male mosquitoes can’t suck blood and why female mosquitoes feed on human blood. Moreover, we have also talked about whether all mosquitoes transmit diseases and whether they help in pollination or not.

Citations 

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4726748/

https://mosquitoreviews.com/learn/mosquitoes-pollination/

https://journals.plos.org/plospathogens/article?id=10.1371/journal.ppat.1008063

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