Most years, outside of wars, the mosquito kills more people than any other animal — including humans.
But while the Discovery Channel’s “Shark Week” floods us with ominous footage, we rarely see just how scary these far deadlier creatures can be. Bill Gates decided to change that by hosting “Mosquito Week” on his blog.
Here are some of the most terrifying scenes from the “Mosquito Week” trailer.
Mosquito larvae hatch in water. Then swarms of them rise up and take flight:
After a mosquito lands, it selects a spot to inject its proboscis. One tube injects an enzyme to prevent clotting, and the other sucks blood:
Aside from the annoying itch, the real problem is that when mosquitoes inject their tubes into human skin, they also carry parasites from one person to another, spreading deadly diseases like malaria, dengue, and chikungunya.
Only female mosquitoes suck blood, which they use as protein for their eggs. Here you can see one engorged with human blood:
Here’s what happens when parasites carried by a mosquito get into the blood:
The parasites that cause malaria reproduce in a person’s liver, and then reenter the bloodstream. They’re easily transmitted from one person to the next, if a mosquito bites an infected person and later bites someone else.
Getting rid of mosquitoes is hard work, and they’re actually becoming resistant to some common insecticides.
If that’s not scary enough, you can check out mosquito week on Gates’s blog, or watch the full trailer here.
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