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isten in English

Mosquito Bites

icon
Published: 11.11.2019
Level 4   |   Time: 3:17
Accent: American
Source: YouTube

Learn how mosquitoes use six needles to suck your blood.


    

triangle Directions


  1. REVIEW the vocabulary / background.
  2. WATCH the video.
  3. ANSWER the questions.
  4. CHECK your answers. (Show Answers)

triangle Vocabulary


  • vulnerable [adj] - easy to be infected or hurt by something
  • motivated [adj] - have a strong reason or desire to do something
  • hatch [v] - the opening of an egg to produce babies
  • a proboscis [n] - the long nose of an animal
  • a sheath [n] - a long hollow cover that protects something inside
  • saw [v] - cut with a blade that has teeth
  • barely [adv] - almost nothing
  • exude [v] - give, discharge
  • a straw [n] - a thin hollow tube used to suck liquid
  • a gut [n] - the stomach of an animal
  • free up [phv] - create more space or time by removing something
  • red blood cells [n] - part of the blood
  • stuff [v] - pack, put a lot of something into
  • spit [v] - eject saliva (water) from the mouth
  • saliva [n] - water from the mouth
  • itchy [adj] - the feeling after being bitten by a mosquito
  • parasite [n] - an organism that lives in a host organism and benefits by taking nutrients from the host
  • a parting gift [exp] - a gift that you give when you leave (part)
  • hitching a ride [exp] - getting a ride somewhere for free
  • welts [n] - a red, swollen mark left on skin after being bitten by a mosquito
  • larvae [n] - baby insects
  • rain gutters [n] - shallow troughs at the edge of a roof for carrying off rainwater

[n] - noun,  [v] - verb,  [phv] - phrasal verb,  [adj] - adjective,  [exp] - expression


triangle Questions


  1. The mosquito is the deadliest animal in the world?
    True
    False

  2. Mosquitoes kill millions of people every year.
    True
    False

  3. Children and pregnant women are mostly immune to mosquito bites.
    True
    False

  4. Only male mosquitoes bite people.
    True
    False

  5. Female mosquitoes need blood to produce eggs.
    True
    False

  6. Mosquitoes need large pools of water to hatch their eggs.
    True
    False

  7. A protective sheath protects the needles inside a mosquito's proboscis.
    True
    False

  8. Mosquitoes have six needles inside their proboscis.
    True
    False

  9. Two of the needles hold the skin apart.
    True
    False

  10. Two of the needles suck up blood from blood vessels.
    True
    False

  11. Mosquitoes separate water from our blood and squeeze it out.
    True
    False

  12. Mosquitoes spit a chemical into our skin to make our blood flow more easily.
    True
    False

  13. Mosquito bites are itchy because of the chemical that mosquitoes spit into our skin.
    True
    False

  14. Mosquitoes purposely infect humans with viruses and parasites.
    True
    False


triangle Script



This is the deadliest animal in the world. Mosquitoes kill hundreds of thousands of people each year. The most vulnerable people: children, pregnant women... No other bite kills more humans or makes more of us sick.

So what makes a mosquito’s bite so effective? For starters, they’re motivated. Only females bite us. They need blood to make eggs and a pool of water for their babies to hatch in. Even a piece of trash can hold enough.

At first glance, it looks simple. This mosquito digging her proboscis into us. But the tools she’s using here are sophisticated. First, a protective sheath retracts. See it bending back?

If you look at a mosquito’s head under a microscope, you can see what that sheath protects. And inside, there are six needles!

Two of them have tiny teeth. She uses those to saw through the skin. They’re so sharp you can barely feel her pushing.

These other two needles hold the tissues apart while she works.

From under the skin, you can see her probing, looking for a blood vessel. Receptors on the tip of one of her other needles pick up on chemicals that our blood vessels exude naturally and guide her to it. Then she uses this same needle like a straw.

As her gut fills up, she separates water from the blood and squeezes it out. See that drop? That frees up space to stuff herself with more nutritious red blood cells

With another needle, she spits chemicals into us. They get our blood flowing more easily, and give us itchy welts afterwards.

And sometimes, before she pries herself away, she leaves a parting gift in her saliva: a virus or a parasite that can sicken or kill us. There’s nothing in it for her. The viruses and parasites are just hitching a ride. But this is what makes mortal enemies out of us and mosquitoes.

They take our blood. Sometimes we take theirs. But often, not soon enough.

Good. You’re still there. These are the larvae of Culex pipiens, a.k.a. the common house mosquito here in California. Gross, right? Well, you can avoid them by emptying your rain gutters. Pet water dishes too.

While you're at it, subscribe! We have so many more science videos coming your way. See you next time!



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