This serious species of mosquito has been described as the “perfect” vector of mosquito-borne diseases and is known to be able to spread dengue and encephalitis and is capable of vectoring up to 30 different pathogens. It is considered to be a minor threat with respect to Dengue and in fact displaces Aedes aegypti, which is a much more competent vector of this disease. Its expansion in the U.S. coincides with a noticeable decline in the abundance of Aedes aegypti, the “yellow fever mosquito”, due to possible resource competition, introduction of mosquito parasites, and possibly reduced fitness in A. aegypti due to inter-species mating. It is a daytime feeder and a very aggressive biter. Females deposit eggs on the sides of containers that will later hold water, the eggs hatching once submerged when rainwater fills that cavity, such as tires, tree holes, and miscellaneous small containers in refuse areas. In cold climates the eggs overwinter and in warm climates the mosquitoes are active year round.
Very important is elimination of breeding resources in landscape, such as discarded containers on the ground, plant containers, rain gutters, bird baths, etc. Larvae feed on organic matter in contaminated water and do not survive in clean water. Discarded tires are a major breeding site, and these should be removed and recycled or drained of water, including drilling holes in old tires to prevent capture of water. Sites that cannot be drained may be filled or treated with larvicides. The wearing of long sleeves and repellent when active outdoors are important measures to prevent bites.