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How long does a mosquito live?

Last updated:
27 October, 2023
Reading time: 3 minutes
mosquito perched on a mosquito net

The mosquito is a very well known insect, especially in the warmer months since it has the bad habit of annoying and biting when they are in our environment. It is very rare not to find someone who has not been bitten at some time by a mosquito. But, due to its expansion in recent years, it makes many people have doubts about them, for example, how long a mosquito lives or how they access the home.

The breeding and arrival of mosquitoes such as the "tiger" mosquito, which are capable of transmitting diseases such as yellow fever, malaria or dengue fever, and this means that we have to be more cautious with this type of insects.

In this article we are going to talk about the life cycle of mosquitoes and how long their life expectancy is in order to know them better and act against them.


Insects are among the most numerous and varied organisms in the planet's ecosystems, second only to sea creatures. Their constant presence is due to the fact that they have a rapid colonization and easy adaptation to different habitats and a short life cycle. We currently know of up to 2 million species of insects, of which mosquitoes are the most common. 2,500 different species (known). 

Mosquitoes are not only known to nibble (especially the females in order to lay eggs), but also because they can also transmit diseases which, depending on the symptomatology, may be more or less severe.

Although on average mosquitoes live from 10 to 30 daysThere are species that can live a little longer. And many times it is determined by sex, where the male can live 10 to 15 days and the females can live 10 to 15 days. females from 42 to 56 days.

What is the life cycle of a mosquito?

Many of the factors that affect the life expectancy of insects are humidity, food, sex, time of year and species. Below, we will show each life stage of these insects.


The female mosquito needs to drink blood in order to lay eggs. In general, females usually lay between 50 to 200 eggs and whose groupings are often referred to as naviculae because of their resemblance to tiny ships. This makes it possible for them to float on water. Although there are also species that deposit their eggs on the ground, inactive, waiting for the ground to flood.

The larva

The egg is estimated to hatching after 24 to 48 hours from the time the eggs are laid by the female. The larvae are always aquatic and may reach grow from 1 mm to 12 mmalthough this may vary according to the species. Similarly, the duration of the larval stage may change depending on the temperature of the water and the environment. The larvae can move through the movement of contractions and will feed on organic matter as algae or microorganisms present in the water. They are easily trapped by other insects and birds.

mosquito larvae

The pupa

The last stage of the larva is called the pupa. This is when the mosquito passes from its larval form to the adult mosquito as well as moving from a life in water to air. This stage can last between 2 to 3 days and no food is required. 

Mosquito pupae are held at the water surface and submerged by contractions until hatching.

mosquito pupa

Adult mosquito

It is the mosquito as we know it. In its adult stage, it leaves the water and can fly. Both male and female mosquitoes fly. feed on flower nectar and do not always drink blood for food. The female mosquito is the only one that ingests blood to get enough protein to feed. maturing and laying eggs.

Before the hibernation period, females feed on nectar to feed themselves during this time and take refuge in protected places, while males die.

What factors determine how long a mosquito lives?

Now that we know the life stages of a mosquito, let's point out more specifically what factors determine whether they can live longer or shorter. The shortest life span is as a larva, while the longest is during adulthood. But, in general, their longevity will depend on:

  • Sex. Females have a longer life span, as their life cycle incorporates egg laying and hibernation.
  • Species. Although all have an approximate life expectancy, they will last more or less days depending on the species.
  • Feeding. The mosquito needs to feed on nectar or fruit, so if there is none, its life will be shorter.
  • Time of year. Mosquitoes need water to live, so times of the year with less humidity can affect their life.

As we have seen, the little monkeys do not live too long and has 4 stages or phases in its life. Now that we know them, we can identify them and act on them to prevent their proliferation.

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Written by: Mosquiteras24h Publications


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