University of Florida scientists reported that the mosquitoes, called Gallinippers or Psorophora ciliate, will likely invade the Sunshine State after being resurrected by last year's Tropical Storm Debby, which produced excessive rainfall and flooding across the state, Gant Daily reported Monday.
"I wouldn't be surprised, given the numbers we saw last year. When we hit the rainy cycle, we may see that again," said Kaufman, who is an associate professor with UF's Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences.
The female gallinipper lays eggs in the soil around ponds and streams. Their eggs can lay dormant for years and hatch when the next floodwater comes.
Last June, Tropical Storm Debbie caused flooding in many parts of Florida, providing perfect environmental conditions for gallinippers, along with other floodwater mosquitoes to hatch and thrive.
Gallinippers are 20 times larger than the ordinary mosquito and are native to the eastern half of the U.S. The insect is known to be notoriously aggressive with a vicious bite.
Unlike the common mosquitoes, gallinippers feed all day long, targeting just about any animal, including fish.
Kaufman said gallinippers may be resistant to insect repellant because of their size.
The only positive thing about it is that it does not transmit disease like malaria and dengue.
Gallinipper larvae also eat the larvae of other mosquito and insects, thus reducing the population of pests.
Dozens of species of mosquitoes reside in Florida as a result of the favorable environmental conditions. According to the Florida Mosquito Database, there are currently 80 species of mosquitoes across the state.