The Asian tiger mosquito (Aedes albopictus) was brought to the United States during the 1980’s in used truck tires shipped from Japan. When the tires were moved from state to state, the Asian tiger mosquito spread. Now it is found in much of the eastern United States, including North Carolina.
The life cycle of a tiger mosquito has four stages: egg, larva, pupa and adult. Larva and pupa are always found in water. Like other mosquitoes, the female Asian tiger mosquito needs blood to produce eggs. The tiger mosquito will bite many types of animals, including people. It likes to bite in the daytime, mostly in the early morning or late afternoon. The bite is no worse than that of other mosquitoes, but large numbers of tiger mosquitoes can be a problem around home or work.
The Asian tiger mosquito lays its eggs in containers that will hold water.
These can be man-made containers like tires, tin cans, buckets, birdbaths and gutters, or natural containers such as holes in trees and rocks. The tiger mosquito can be a problem around homes or in the woods because of the many places it can breed. Eggs are not harmed by dry or cold weather. When flooded with water during the summer, the eggs hatch. Even in a small container there can be hundreds of larvae. During warm weather, it may take only a week for the tiger mosquito to grow from egg to adult.
The adult tiger mosquito does not fly far.
It is most likely to be found close to its breeding place. The peak months for this mosquito are July and August.