What Eats Mosquito Larvae

by | Last updated Jun 29, 2023 | Mosquitoes

I hate mosquitoes with all my heart. Their buzzing and buzzing sound alone makes me cringe. The way they run the warm outdoor moments in the summer months is nerve wrecking.

Given that they itch more when they strike is something scary. And don’t even get me started with the fact that the female species can cause malaria.

Yet as bad as these bloodsuckers are, they aren’t difficult to control. In fact, one of the best ways to reduce their population completely is to destroy them from the source. And you can do that with the most effective mosquito larvae predators.

So in this guide, you’ll leave about what eats mosquito larvae so you can easily control them and never have to worry about breeding and bites.

Let’s get to it.

What is a Mosquito Larva?

A mosquito larva is a hatched egg. This egg will go through four different stages to become an adult mosquito within a period of 30 days.

Mosquito larvae aren’t harmful to humans or animals. It’s still going through metamorphosis, a stage in which it can’t bite or cause illness. The fourth metamorphic stage is the one known to harm humans, because this is where the larva develops into a mosquito that can bite and/or cause illnesses.

What Do Mosquito Larvae Eat?

We’ll look at what eats mosquito larvae to stop them from growing and developing into adult mosquitoes. But before that, it’s important to know what the larvae eat in the first place.

For a mosquito to undergo metamorphosis and become a live, flying adult mosquito, the larvae will need to feed from the right source and live under favorable conditions.

To be clear, the larvae must eat constantly, as that’s the only way it can get the energy to grow. They primarily feed on favorable microorganisms such as fungi, algae, and plankton.

During this stage, some larvae will even feed on other larvae, and they’ll molt four times, becoming larger after every molt.

What Eats Mosquito Larvae – Most Helpful Mosquito Larvae Predators

In just four stages, mosquitoes can breed in large numbers and become chaotic. Not only can they become a nuisance, especially in the warm months of summer, they can easily bite hundreds of hosts and potential spread diseases.

That’s why it’s important to stop their spread before they get molt the fourth time and become pupae and eventually adult mosquitoes. And the best way to do that is by using predators that eat mosquito larvae.

Fish that Eat Mosquito Larvae

Because fish love to feed on invertebrate prey, including mosquito larvae, they’re the best option to include in a pond, tank, or area with stagnant water.

It’s not just one type of fish that can feed on these hatched eggs. There are up to seven unique varieties, so you can choose what best suits your preference.

  • Mosquito fish: Include them in ponds, well, tanks, or anywhere with still water and full of mosquito larvae. They can consume wrigglers in the count of up to 160 per hour. Plus, they tend to do well in all water types.
  • Goldfish: They grow up to one and a half feet long and prefer still or slow moving water. They can stand up to cold conditions quite well and are good at eating mosquito larvae.
  • Minnows: They’re about one and a half inches long and have slim bodies.
  • Zebra Danio: They can easily feed on mosquito larvae since they swim on the surface of stagnant water.

Other types of fish that can eat mosquito larvae include guppies, koi, and tilapia. So if you want to make sure that stagnant waters around you don’t have the larvae on them, consider using any of these seven types of fish.

Birds that Eat Mosquito Larvae

It’s easy to assume that since many birds eat mosquitoes, it can be a similar case with the larvae. That’s not the case, though. Only a few species, specifically the migratory songbirds and the juvenile waterfowls, eat mosquito larvae.

Others like the tree swallows not only feed on mosquitos but also tend to prey on their larvae.

Insects that Eat Mosquito Larvae

It’s not just fish and birds that find mosquito larvae appealing and appetizing. Even some insects, such as the dragonflies and damselfly tend to feed on mosquito larvae.

Then there are aquatic beetles. They live only temporarily in ponds and pools, and they have the tendency to feast a lot on the mosquito larvae.

Frequently Asked Questions on mosquito larvae

What do mosquito larvae turn into?

Once a female mosquito lays an egg on still water, the larvae will molt three times and turn into a pupae.

The pupae will take some time and develop into an adult mosquito, which then leaves the water and start to fly around.

Will turtles eat mosquito larvae?

We know turtles to feed mostly on small fish, such as Gambesia, insects, and plants.

But do you know that some species can actually feed on larvae? So including the right species in still water can actually help to get rid of mosquito larvae.

Can you swim in a pool with mosquito larvae?

You can swim in a pool with mosquito larvae after you apply mosquito dunk to the still water. A mosquito dunk is a naturally occurring bacterium found in soil and in liquid form.

It produces a toxin, which easily kills mosquito larvae. Since mosquito dunks are 100% biological, they’re completely safe for human being.

As you can see, there are different ways to control get rid of mosquito larvae from stagnant or slow moving water. So you don’t have to let these bothersome insects breed and grow out of control while you know what eats mosquito larvae.


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