Mosquitos expert offers knowledge on pesky insects - WKRN News 2

Mosquitos expert offers knowledge on pesky insects

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. -

Since early May, 18 batches of mosquitoes have tested positive for the West Nile virus in the Nashville area.

Nashville's News 2 recently spoke with mosquito researcher Dr. Alicia Bray who offered up knowledge on the often pesky insects.

"There are at least 60 different types of mosquitoes in Tennessee.  Most mosquitoes do not bite humans, most bite small mammals, squirrels things like that," she explained.

Though mosquitoes typically target mammals, the insects do pose a deadly threat to humans with the risk of West Nile virus.

"For West Nile, they have to bite a bird that has West Nile and then bite a human that does not have West Nile to transmit those diseases," Dr. Bray said.

Dr. Bray added that only female mosquitoes bite and they seek out certain body chemistries.

"They really like perfumes, if you use perfumes, shampoos or conditioners or lotions, they really like that," she explained.

The insects also are drawn to sweaty feet or shoes.

"They really like those smells, so they will be attracted to your feet," Dr. Bray added.

Dr. Bray also said mosquitoes are more likely to be out in full force and bite when there's a full moon.

"Mosquitoes like a full moon because they can see well. It provides more light they can be more active," she explained.

Health officials add that clothing plays an important part in repelling mosquitoes. Dr. Bray recommends long, loose and light clothing.

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