Apparently, the normal sequence is female mosquitoes first detect the CO2 coming from our breath. They can do this from over 30 feet away.
Then as they get closer, they smell, using receptors in their antennae, the scent from various chemicals in our sweat (like Lactic acid). This is the new finding, although the article doesn't say how far away they can do this.
Then when they get really close, they are further drawn to us by our body heat.
It's like these guys ("gals" actually, the males don't bite) were engineered to find us! But the article points out there's a positive side to this in that they may be able to disrupt the mosquitoes' receptors used to detect human scent and thereby create a new type of mosquito repellent or enhance existing ones.
Also, a linked article from 2015 shows the effectiveness of various repellents. Most of the people on this site already know DEET is considered the most effect repellent currently, but "Cutter lemon eucalyptus insect repellent", which has no DEET in it, was surprisingly effective, nearly as much as DEET!
I don’t care for sicky sweet smelly flowery fruity stuff when I’m out; coconut scented sunscreen, eucalyptus-lemon bug dope, Off!, etc; drives me crazy; I like to smell the vegetation & soils; but perhaps the new research will help develop new goop, though I’m happy with the goop I use.
-------------- " I'm really happy about this! … I have very strong good and horrible memories up there." – oldgranola, NWH’s outdoors advocate.
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