Mosquitoes and Blood Types

mosquito and human blood

Everyone knows that mosquitoes feed on blood. These little flying insects are probably among the most annoyable creatures on the planet, both to humans and to our beloved pets. Their quick bites are not painful, but they certainly can be itchy and extremely irritable, especially among those countries where mosquitoes can actually transmit deadly viruses.

But have you ever noticed that they often seem to prefer biting one certain person when compared to others? Well, you probably have. In particular if you are the one that gets bitten more. So, have you ever wondered why that is? Modern scientists say that mosquitoes have preferences according to our different blood types.  

Why does Blood Type make a Difference?

To give an answer to this, we should first understand why exactly do mosquitoes feed on protein. These minute insects are not designed by nature to become blood-thirsty vampires once they grow up, but they rather need our proteins in order to lay eggs. Indeed, only female mosquitoes consume human blood, but not for nutritive purposes. What they feed on is nectar from flowers.

mosquito sucking human blood

Therefore, we can conclude that female mosquitoes consume blood in order for being able to lay healthy eggs. And some blood types are simply more enriched with certain characteristics than others are. Mothers, obviously, want the best for their babies, so that is why mosquitoes seem to prefer some blood types over the others.

What Blood Type do Mosquitoes Like

Scientific researches were conducted during the years of 1974, 2004 and during the recent 2019. All of them have led to showcasing the same bottom result: mosquitoes like blood type 0 most. But why is that?

It is believed that this is because of the lack of antigens A or B among the surface of red blood cells. As opposed to types A or B which have some A or B antigens on their surface, as well as to the type of AB which features both antigens, type 0 offers such protein nutrients which are simply more suitable for mosquitoes to lay their eggs in a healthier way.

Furthermore, researchers came to another helpful and interesting finding. Mosquitoes are much more drawn to those people who have the ability of signaling their blood type through saliva or other secretions as opposed to those who cannot.

What Blood Type do Mosquitoes Not Like

According to the same researchers, mosquitoes seem to dislike blood type A. That does not have to mean that they will avoid biting people who have such blood type, but it does mean that they will often choose to annoy a different person if they can choose. So, those people who have tons of antigens A among the surface of their red blood cells can be considered as the lucky ones in this story.

People who have both antigens are somewhere in the middle, while those with B antigens are occupying the second place on the mosquito preference scale.

When it comes to secretors and non-secretors, mosquitoes generally seem to be attracted much more to secretors than vice-versa, non-depending on the blood type. For instance, if a non-secretor with blood type 0 is having a drink outside with a secreter with blood type AB, the female mosquito will most likely choose to bite the secreter, even though it does not have such blood type which they prefer.

Blood TypeSurface AntigensPreference Level
AA4
BB2
ABA and B3
0None1
Scale of Blood Type Preferences

What Else Matters?

If you are a secreter with blood type 0, there is no need to panic. That does not necessarily have to mean that you will always be attacked by mosquitoes whenever you find yourself outdoors. Indeed, blood type does make a difference, but it is not the only factor which will influence their choice of the next blood victim. Here is what else matters:

Choice of Clothes

Yes, the color which you like to wear does make a difference to mosquitoes. Recent investigations have led to the conclusion that these little bloodsuckers are highly more attracted to people who wear dark clothes when compared to those in somehow lighter variations.

It is not fully understood why, but it is believed that mosquitoes mostly rely on their vision and dark colors make people easier to notice. Therefore, if you are a lover of classic black outfit combinations, you may re-consider your choices during summertime, as they can spot you from a distance of 15 meters.

Breath

Ever noticed how mosquitoes love buzzing around your head at most? Well, this is not for no reason. These little insects are attracted to the carbon dioxide which people emit while breathing. Or, more precisely, while exhaling. That means, the more you exhale, the more attractive will you be to mosquitoes. People who are larger in size usually also produce more carbon dioxide. Also, pregnant women tend to exhale greater volumes of carbon dioxide.

Body Heat & Sweat

Mosquitoes have a strong sense of smell and they love warm victims which can offer them plenty of lactic acid and ammonia. Consequentially, people who tend to exercise or to simply sweat more than others will be a tastier treat to female mosquitoes.

Beer

It is a fact that mosquitoes prefer people who are drinking beer to those who drink soft drinks, but the reasons hiding behind such funny behavior are still to be fully researched and understood.

Wrapping Up

After analyzing the various factors which make mosquitoes choose one person as their target instead of another, we can certainly conclude that blood type really does make a difference. People who have no proteins on the surface of their red blood cells are much more appealing to these flying nuisances.

However, people who are secretors seem to be their next favorite option. Therefore, blood type does make a difference, but it is not essential. Factors such as body size, beer level in our organisms, clothes coloration as well as temperature also play an important role.    

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