To study the life cycle of mosquito - Lab Work

To study the life cycle of mosquito - Science Practicals

Aim
To study the life cycle of mosquito.

Theory
Life cycle of a mosquito passes through several stages. Each stage is morphologically distinct. Even their habitat differs with the adult being aerial and the earlier stages being aquatic. Though there are
many species of mosquitoes, their life cycles, more or less, exhibit common features.

Materials Required
Chart showing the life cycle of a mosquito and/ or museum specimen of stages in the life cycle, permanent slides, and compound microscope.

Procedure
Step 1: The chart is observed carefully and the different stages in the life cycle are noted.
Step 2: The characteristics of each stage is discussed.
Step 3: Diagrams of all the stages are drawn.
Step 4: The preserved speciemen and name the stages are observed.

Discussions
The eggs of various species of mosquito are deposited on stagnant water bodies like ponds, ditches, cess pools, lakes etc. Any container with stagnant water is a potential breeding place for mosquitoes.
The larvae hatch out from the eggs within a few hours and begin feeding on decaying plant matter. They float on the surface of water and breath through a specialised siphon tube. The larval stage lasts for a few days during which several layers of skin are shed. This stage lasts for a few days to a few weeks. The larval stage is followed by the pupal stage.
Pupae do not feed but gradually metamorphose or change into adults. Pupal stage lasts for a few days. From the pupa an adult mosquito emerges. Before the adult starts flying it rests for a few days du ring
which its outer cuticle hardens.
After about a week, adult female mosquito begins searching for a host. It generally feeds on blood, which is a rich source of protein that is helpful to make a fresh batch of eggs, Eggs are deposited on or near water. The male mosquito does not seek a blood meal, but prefers a sugar meal which it obtains by feeding on the nectar of flowers. The female adults also feed on nectar in between blood meals. Adult mosquitoes live for several weeks.

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