Aedes albopictus

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Aedes:From Ancient Greek ἀηδής (aēdḗs, “unpleasant, odious”)
albo- means "white"; pictus means "painted"
The name describes a mosquito that appears to have white stripes painted on it
  • Aedes albopictus (asian tiger mosquito, the banded mosquito of Bengal) which is the vector for many significant arboviruses has internationalised its distribution worryingly.
    Aedes albopictus female mosquito obtaining a blood meal from a human host
    In 1980 it was found in Indian Ocean around southern Eastern Africa and Madagascar, South East Asia in a belt from India through Burma to Philippines and Borneo and in Japan and Manchuria but now it is found throughout North America, Central Americia, much of South Americia, Southern Europe, Equatorial West Africa, China and Mongolia, Australia and New Guinea. It continues to spread.By October 2016 it had reached Folkestone, Kent in the UK.


Adults range in size of approximately 2 mm to 10 mm and have black bodies with a conspicuous pattern of white stripes. There is a distinctive single white band (stripe) down the length of the back. As other mosquitoes can have similar markings so perhaps the best indication may be aggressive, brisk, daytime biting, up to 48 times an hour. These meals are often incomplete for egg development but make it hard to swat. Many other mosquitoes bite at dawn and dusk. Adult female mosquitoes feed on humans, animals, birds and frogs, making it less problematical for human to human virus transmission but increasing its vector potential for zoonotic arboviruses transmission. They are successfully adapting themselves to cooler region such as northern France. While in warm and humid tropical regions, they are active the entire year long, in temperate regions they hibernate over winter. Eggs from strains in the temperate zones are more tolerant to the cold than ones from warmer regions. They can even tolerate snow and temperatures under freezing.


  • Superkingdom Eukaryota
    • Kingdom Metazoa (Animalia)
      • Subkingdom Bilateria
        • Infrakingdom Deuterostomia
          • Phylum Arthropoda
            • Superclass Hexapoda
              • Class Insecta
                • Subclass Neoptera
                  • Infraclass Endopterygota
                    • Order Diptera (flies)
                      • Suborder Nematocera
                        • Superfamily Culicoidea
                          • Family Culicidae
                            • Subfamily Culicinae
                              • Tribe Aedini
                                • Genus Aedes
                                  • Species Aedes albopictus

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