Mosquitoes Feeding on Corpses in Katrina's Wake

Jean Michel Maes jmmaes at IBW.COM.NI
Thu Sep 8 21:58:10 CDT 2005

My impression is the same, I do not think that mosquitoes will bite dead
If the main problem is bacterial, probably the vectors to control are flies
and cockroaches.



Dr. Jean-Michel MAES
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----- Original Message -----
From: "Ken Kinman" <kinman2 at>
To: <TAXACOM at>
Sent: Thursday, September 08, 2005 9:57 PM
Subject: Re: Mosquitoes Feeding on Corpses in Katrina's Wake

> I've heard that even some kinds of moths (although presumably not vectors
of disease) have been known to suck blood from the wounds on animals, both
living and dead.  So it wouldn't be surprising if some mosquitoes might
occasionally feed on corpses (human or otherwise).  But as a major
occurrence that would cause widespread disease outbreaks, I have my doubts.
Most female mosquitoes seem to be mainly attracted to gases breathed out by
living animals, so they would be less inclined to attack dead animals if
there are living hosts available.  If there is a really huge explosion of
mosquitoes, that might change, but frankly I wouldn't be surprised if other
insects might be even worse vectors in this situation.  Anyway, I would also
be interested to hear opinions from those who specialize in this sort of
thing.  Direct exposure to bacteria and viruses in the polluted water seems
to be more of threat so far than indirect exposure through insect vectors.
>   ~~Ken (two cents worth from a non-dipterist)
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