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Our War Against Mosquitoes

Updated on May 11, 2012
The enemy, currently being held in a holding jar.
The enemy, currently being held in a holding jar. | Source

Mosquitoes are possibly the most hated insect ever and one of the biggest killers in the world. The following is a look at the current state of our war against mosquitoes based on real (and some fictitious) statistics and some wilful negligence of many factors which could influence the outcome.

According to the estimates of the United State Census Bureau, there were 7,005,659,97 people on the earth at 08:08am GMT on the 8th of April 2012 (a number which would no doubt be larger by now). Lets say we put an estimate on the world population of mosquitoes at a number 100 times greater than that of people, an estimate which I’m guessing could rather conservative. This means that there are currently 700,565,997,200 mosquitoes in the world, yes over 700 billion pesky little mosquitoes.

Lets also say that the average person kills a mosquito each day and is bitten once each night. The figures are not looking good for the mosquitoes with 70,056,600 being killed each day already.

Lets estimate a mosquito sucks 5 microlitres of blood per visit. The average person has 5 litres of blood so it would take 1,000,000 mosquito bites to completely drain a person dry. In the real world (which all of these figures no doubt differ from by the way), fatal blood loss (Class IV Hemmorage) occurs when the body looses more than 40% of its blood supply (thus a person would die after a mere 400,000 mosquito bites).

If we divide the total numbers of mosquitoes by 400,000 we see that if the mosquitoes were better able to coordinate their attack against the humans they could potentially kill 1,751,415 people per night, fortunately they are not this bright (the human population is growing around by about 200 thousand per day and couldn’t cope with such an onslaught). Mosquitoes do however kill around 3,000,000 million people per year (or 8,219 people per day) due to mosquito-borne diseases such as malaria, dengue and yellow fever.

So looking forward at the predicted toll of this horrible war for 2012 we have:

  • Mosquitoes killed by humans: 25,570,659,000
  • New mosquitoes hatching (at 20% growth per annum): 140,113,199,440
  • Humans killed by mosquitoes: 3,000,000
  • New humans entering the fray (at 1% growth per annum): 73,000,000

With over 25 billion mosquito casualties this year we’ve won the battle but not the war. At their current rate of growth I predict mosquitoes will have killed the last human being by 2048. If the mayan calander doesn’t cause our downfall this year the mosquito apocalypse will be coming before we know it. I think it’s time we gave the diplomatic route a shot.

DISCLAIMER: This statistical implications of this article are largely fiction (please don't cite this article in any of your assignments or you will fail) and does not take into account contribution of our allies in this fight against mosquitoes including bats, sparrows, mosquitofish, dragonflies, mosquito coils and tropical strength bug spray. We may all make it to 2052 yet, god help us all.


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