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Mosquitoes and other nematocysts

Pest control in Ibiza and Formentera: mosquitoes and other nematoceroses.

Mosquitoes and other nematoceroses: health risks and economic losses.

Mosquitoes and other nematocysts.

Nematocerans inhabit the tropics to arctic regions. They are easily distinguished from flies by their long trunks, which they use for biting. There are an estimated 3,200 species with vector capacity, i.e. the ability to transmit diseases caused by viruses, protozoa or larvae which they carry.

From the point of view of health interest, four families can be distinguished:

  • Family Culicidae: generally known as "mosquitoes", the subfamilies Culex pipiens and Aedes spp. are prominent.
  • Family Psychodidae: generally known as "mosquitoes" or "damp flies", of which the subfamilies Psychoda spp. and Phlebotomus spp. are prominent.
  • Family Simuliidae: the "black flies".
  • Family Ceratopogonidae: also known as "dwarf midges".

Note: A more detailed description of their appearance, life cycle and the health importance of their control is given below under "Mosquitoes and other nematoceran pests: main species".

Mosquitoes, and nematocerans in general, are full metamorphosis insects: they go through the egg, larval, pupal and adult stages. Depending on the species, they will lay eggs directly in water or, alternatively, in areas where water is common, with development and hatching of the eggs taking place when these areas contain water again.

The larvae and pupae develop in the water (they only take oxygen from the outside by crawling to the surface). The mosquitoes leave the aquatic environment, once they emerge in their adult form from the pupa.

The larval development lasts 4 to 10 days, the pupal stage from 1 to 14 days, depending on the mosquito species.

It is the female mosquito that bites as part of her reproductive process, as she uses the blood to lay eggs. Male mosquitoes, which have a different mouthparts, commonly feed on nectar and plant juices.

Their activity peaks at the beginning and end of summer, but they remain active from spring until late autumn (in Ibiza and Formentera, depending on the area of the island, they can even be active in the winter months if the temperatures are relatively mild).


Mosquitoes and economic losses

Unlike other pests, they do not cause damage to infrastructures, equipment, etc. However, their presence will cause indirect losses in premises and establishments that may be affected by a mosquito infestation, which will scare away customers.

The same applies to certain public garden areas or public fountains, which may even be closed at certain times due to a plague of mosquitoes.


Mosquitoes and health risks

Historically, the mosquito has been and continues to be a vector of numerous diseases, both among people and animals: birds, cattle, domestic animals, etc.

Among the most relevant diseases, caused by viruses, protozoa or larvae transmitted through their bites, are: malaria, yellow fever, some types of encephalitis, leishmaniasis (canine and human), dengue fever, filariasis, West Nile virus, Zika, etc.

According to the WHO, vector-borne diseases account for more than 17% of all infectious diseases and cause more than 700,000 deaths each year. The Aedes and Culex genera are the most problematic.

Without a doubt, having a good mosquito control plan should be a priority for anyone who has this pest in their usual environment.


Mosquito identification and control.

Identification of mosquito infestation:



-Detection of larvae in water accumulations.

Mosquito control by Integrated Pest Management (IPM):

-Prior inspection.

-Control of organisational measures.

-Control of structural measures.

-Biological control.

-Application of biocides.

-Use of repellents.

-Installation of pheromone traps.

For a more detailed description of our work methodology, please consult the description of our Integrated Pest Control (IPC).


Mosquitoes and other nematoceros pests in Ibiza and Formentera: main species.

Mosquitoes and other nematoceros pests in Ibiza and Formentera: main species.

The field of nematocysts, which includes the so-called "mosquitoes", is quite extensive and varied, but broadly speaking, it can be said that they have in common their role as vectors of diseases and an annoying and irritating bite.

From a health point of view, as mentioned above, there are four families of mosquitoes present on Ibiza and Formentera:

  • Family Culicidae: generally known as "mosquitoes", notably the subfamilies Culex pipiens and Aedes spp.

Common mosquito (Culex pipiens): it is an urban mosquito, more active at twilight and at night, with a clear tendency to enter buildings and homes.

It can breed inside buildings if standing water is available.

A single copulation allows females to be fertilised for life, needing only to consume blood before each clutch. Eggs are laid in clusters on the surface of the water, in groups of 100 to 200 eggs.

They are vectors of diseases such as Nile fever or animal dirofilariasis.


culex pipienes larvas
Mosquito larvae breathing on the surface of the water in which they are developing.
culex pipiens eclosion
The process of the adult common mosquito emerging from the pupa that forms the larva, when the larva reaches its maximum development.
culex pipiens picandoFemale common mosquito feeding on blood. 


Dengue or yellow fever mosquito (Aedes aegypti): although it is true that it is not a particularly common mosquito species, neither in the peninsula nor in the archipelagos, its knowledge and monitoring is important, given that mosquito populations are highly variable, among other factors, thanks to the movement of people or climate change.

Females are responsible for the bites, as part of their reproductive cycle (they need blood for egg production). They lay their eggs on the ground, in spots where, sooner or later, they will eventually gain access to water, at which point the eggs begin to develop.

This species is a potential vector of diseases such as Zika, yellow fever, chikungunya and dengue fever.


mosquito on human skin


Marsh mosquito (Aedes (Ochlerptatus) caspius): has a very irritating bite, and is most active at twilight during the summer months. It lays its eggs on dry, easily flooded land, where they can remain for long periods of time, waiting for the ideal conditions for their development.

It is often found in humid areas of high salinity, or, as its name suggests, in coastal wetlands.

It is the vector of West Nile virus.

Gran Canaria, Spain October 22nd 2021: An aedes caspius, a floodwater mosquito species that bites humans and animals day and night maybe responsible for the transmission some infections in humans.


Tiger mosquito (Aedes albopictus): this is an invasive mosquito species that has been detected in the peninsula for the first time in 2004, and whose origin is located in Southwest Asia. Its presence was first reported in the Balearic Islands in 2012. Since then, it has become an ever-expanding regular that has arrived here to stay.

The females are responsible for the bites, which they do in order to develop their eggs. Female tiger mosquitoes use accumulations of water to lay their eggs, even small domestic ones such as rainwater in plastic, buckets, cans, etc. For this reason, it is extremely useful for their control to keep our environment free of stagnant water, no matter how small these accumulations may be.

The tiger mosquito can attack alone or in a group, and make one or several bites.

It is a potential vector of, among others, dengue fever, yellow fever, encephalitis, etc.


Aedes aegypti Mosquito. Close up a Mosquito sucking human blood,


Anopheles mosquitoes Antroparvus and spp. is the main representative species of the genus Anopheles, of the 14 present in the Iberian Peninsula and Balearic Islands. In the past, it was a vector of malaria in Spain. It develops, preferably, in waterlogged areas or areas with low salinity water.

They can be distinguished by their characteristic perching, where adults perch on surfaces or their hosts, leaning their bodies at an angle of 45-90º..

mosquito extermination company ibiza formentera mosquito control fumigation mosquitoes Ibiza FormenteraMosquito larvae.

pest control company ibiza formentera pest exterminator
Female mosquito biting.

  • Family Psychodidae: Generally known as "gnats" or "damp flies", the subfamilies Psychoda spp. and Phlebotomus are prominent.

Moisture flies, bathroom flies or drain flies: Psychoda spp. They have a grey body and paler-coloured wings. Both parts are covered with hairs.

They are commonly found in bathrooms, kitchens, areas around septic tanks where they can gain access, and walls in damp areas such as basements.

They are usually most active at night, do not bite and are not vectors for humans.

They lay their eggs on decomposing organic substrate, and have a reproductive cycle of about 2-3 weeks.


Psychoda cinerea, Psychodidae, Satara, Maharashtra, India


Phlebotomes: Phlebotomus Sp.: Also known as sand flies, sand flies or sand flies, they are small diptera between 1.5 and 3.5 mm in size. They are generally pale in colour, hairy and gibbous (hairless) in appearance. To date, more than 700 species have been described. Phlebotomine sandflies are carriers of leishmaniasis. In the Balearic Islands there are at least 4 of the 13 recorded in the Iberian Peninsula.

In tropical areas, they can be active all year round. But in the Balearic Islands, due to the lower temperature during the winter months, they are more active from spring to autumn. Their peak activity is in spring and autumn, when the combination of humidity and warm temperatures create the most favourable conditions for their multiplication.

Unlike other mosquitoes, their biological cycle is not linked to water. After feeding on the blood of their hosts, the females lay their eggs in sandy, dark, relatively moist places such as caves or rocky crevices. The chosen site must also have traces of organic matter, where the larvae (which are terrestrial) develop, such as animal droppings or decomposing plant remains.

After a month, the larvae transform into pupae, which will take 1 to 2 weeks to complete their development to the adult stage.

small flies gnats hairy flies ibiza formentera pest control company


  • Family Simuliidae: the so-called "black flies"..

Simulids (family simuliidae) or black flies: small dipterans, 1.5 to 4 mm in size, generally dark in colour. They have the appearance of "black flies", differing from mosquitoes in their mouthparts (they have mandibles instead of a proboscis) and a stubbier body.

Biting is done by the female black flies. They usually do so during daylight hours and it is part of their reproductive cycle: they need blood for egg production. Their bites are very annoying, although painless at the time of biting.

Although they are not classified as vectors in Europe, in tropical countries they are responsible for the transmission of several diseases, including onchocerciasis or "river blindness" and Ozzard's filariasis. Therefore, their control is important not only because of their annoying bites, but also because of their potential as a vector.

Black flies are a growing problem in areas such as the Mediterranean and central Spain.

The life cycle of black flies is linked to watercourses such as rivers, streams, irrigation canals or wet areas with water flows. The females lay their eggs directly in the water, on vegetation on the banks in contact with water or in areas of frequent splashing or flooding.

Eggs hatch in 3-7 days. Larvae develop into pupae in 7-12 days, and pupae develop into adults in 1-2 weeks.


Adult Black Fly of the Family Simuliidae sucking blood from a human on the skin



  • Family Ceratopogonidae: also known as "dwarf mosquitoes"..


Dwarf midges or Culicoides spp. small mosquitoes, less than 3mm in size, that develop in wetlands and areas with abundant water accumulation.

They have a gibbous thorax, hairy wings, mottled with light spots and short legs. They locate their prey attracted by the heat and CO2 they release. They provoke their bite by biting directly into the skin.

Diurnal, their daily activity peaks at dawn and dusk. Their sting goes unnoticed at first, but is painful and irritating in the long term.

It is a species of public health concern because of its role as a vector of filariae and arboviruses that they transmit to animals and humans. Of particular importance is its role as a transmitter of African horse sickness and bluetongue virus in sheep.

Dwarf mosquitoes have an aquatic life cycle. Eggs, laid in water or in an easily flooded area, hatch in 2-3 days. The larval stage lasts about 2 weeks and the pupa 2-3 days. In the adult phase, it is the females that bite, as an essential part of their reproductive cycle: they need the proteins they obtain from the blood of their hosts to produce eggs.


Nova Control has the professionals, resources and experience necessary to guarantee the correct control of pests and microorganisms both in Ibiza and Formentera, always seeking to cover the service in a discreet and professional manner.

At Nova Control, we always try to adapt to the needs and requirements of our clients, whether they are public, private or private entities.

For further information, please do not hesitate to contact us:

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If you have any questions or doubts, please do not hesitate to contact us.


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