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Mosquito biting mouthparts

This close-up picture shows the biting mouthparts of anopheline mosquito. Anophelines are easily separated from other mosquitoes by their long palpi (two parts with widening end), almost reaching the end of lower lip (labium).

The remaining parts of mosquito proboscis are paired mandibles and maxillae that form needle-like structures (stylets) which are enclosed by the labium. When mosquito bites, maxillae penetrate the skin and anchor the mouthparts thus allowing other parts to be inserted. The sheath-like labium slides back and the remaining mouthparts pass through its tip and into the tissue. Then through hypopharynx mosquito injects saliva, which contains anticoagulants that stop the blood from clotting. And finally the labrum (upper lip) is used to suck up the blood.

The hairy structures are antennae.

Mosquito biting mouthparts

mosquito picture 


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