Mosquitoes - Fight The Bite!

Fight the Bite Brochure

Australian mosquitoes

There are over 300 species of mosquito in Australia but less than 20 represent a significant risk to human health, either as nuisance-biting pests or vectors of disease.

Mosquito biology

During the warmer months, mosquitoes can take less than one week to complete their development from eggs to adults.  Only female mosquitoes bite.

Mosquitoes are primarily attracted to carbon dioxide and the “smell” of our skin. Each mosquito species varies in its propensity to bite humans.

People can vary in both their attractiveness to mosquitoes and their sensitivity to a mosquito bite.

In addition Mosquitoes rarely emerge infected with a virus, they must acquire it from feeding on an infective animal and the virus must infect the mosquito (a complex process that may take up to 10 days) before the virus can be transmitted to a human.

Avoidance of mosquitoes outdoors

While mosquitoes can be active around the home, the greatest risk of mosquito borne disease transmission typically occurs close to wetlands, bushland or other environments where both mosquitoes and wildlife are abundant.

Avoid these natural habitats and times of the day when mosquitoes are most active. When mosquito populations are high, biting may be experienced at any time of the day but, generally, mosquitoes are most active at dawn and dusk.

As well as the use of repellents, wearing loosely fitting long pants and long sleeved shirts will assist in reducing the number of mosquito bites received.  Ensure windows and doors are well screened, ceiling and floor fans may also reduce the indoor activity.  Residual insecticides on exterior buildings may provide protection.

Studies have shown that the consumption of alcohol may increase the risk of being bitten by a mosquito due to increased body temperature (and perhaps you’re having such a great time you fail to reapply repellent). 

Registered topical mosquito repellents and their estimated reapplication times in Australia

Mosquito Repellant

Concentration

Estimated Reapplication times

Diethytoluamide (DEET)

<<10%

2 H2 Hours

 

10 – 20%

3 – 4 Hours

 

20 – 40%

4 – 6 Hours

 

80%

As Required

Picaridin

<10%

H2 Hours

 

10 – 20%

3 – 4 Hours

Extract of Lemon Eucalyptus (PMD)

30%

H2 Hours

Eucalyptus Oil

<10%

1 Hour

Melaleuca Oil

<10%

1 Hour

Citronella Oil

<10%

1 Hour

Blend of Botanical Extracts

<10%

1 Hour