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What Do Mosquitoes Look Like?

Did you know that there are more than 3,000 species of mosquitoes worldwide? Yet all mosquitoes share a variety of physical characteristics, including:

  • Adult mosquitoes are only about ¼” – ½” long. They weigh less than 2.5 mg.
  • Mosquitoes vary in color depending on species. Common mosquitoes in the U.S. are gray or brown in color with white stripes and iridescent, hair-like scales.
  • All mosquitoes have two long wings and slender bodies that rest in a “humpback” position. They also have long legs. 
  • Mosquitoes have a long proboscis.
Mosquito close up white background

How Do You Know When It’s A Mosquito?

Mosquitoes can be easily confused for other insects. However, they have two unique body parts that can help distinguish them from other bugs: a beak-like proboscis and scale-covered wings that give them a fringe-like appearance. Mosquitoes are often smaller than you think; people often confuse them for much larger bugs. Pay attention the behaviors of the insect to help identify it.

What Other Bugs Look Like Mosquitoes?

It is extremely common to misidentify a crane fly, midge, gnat, or mayfly as a mosquito. Here’s how they differ from mosquitoes:

  1. Crane flies: Also referred to as mosquito hawks, these lanky insects look like giant mosquitoes. They can grow to nearly double the size of mosquitoes. They are harmless and will not draw blood.
  2. Mayflies: The mayfly has larger, upward slanting wings and does not possess a proboscis. Mayflies do not bite or sting.
  3. Midges/gnats: Although somewhat related to mosquitoes, midges rarely bite and do not transmit disease. They appear in large swarms and lack a proboscis. 

What Types of Mosquitoes are Found in Central TN?

There are about 150 species of mosquitoes found nationwide. These are the types that can be found here in Central TN, and they can look very similar:

  • Asian Bush Mosquito
  • Asian Tiger Mosquito
  • Eastern Tree Hole Mosquito
  • Malaria Mosquito
  • Northern House Mosquito
  • Southern House Mosquito
  • Western Encephalitis Mosquito
  • White-Dotted Mosquito
  • Yellow Fever Mosquito

To help identify what type of mosquito you are dealing with, it’s best to enlist the help of a professional mosquito exterminator.

What Do Mosquitoes Look Like? in Central Tennessee

Serving Central Tennessee

Murfreesboro, TN | Smyrna, TN | Christiana, TN | La Vergne, TN | Brentwood, TN | Franklin, TN | Lebanon, TN | Mt. Juliet, TN | Nolensville, TN | Woodbury, TN | College Grove, TN | Rockvale, TN | Hermitage, TN | Liberty, TN | Spring Hill, TN | Thompsons Station, TN