Like all flies, mosquitoes undergo the same four-stage life cycle: egg, larva, pupa, and adult. The second and third stages are aquatic. Depending on the particular species, the female mosquito lays her eggs, either individually or in attached groups called “rafts.” The word mosquito is spanish and means "little fly." Male mosquitos do not feed on blood but rather nectar from flowers. Female mosquitos suck blood for egg development.
Egg shape and color varies with species, but the size is about 1/25" (1mm) long. Approximately one hour after they’re laid, the eggs darken and become opaque, effectively camouflaging them.
The mosquito larva has a well-developed head with mouth brushes used for feeding, a large thorax with no legs, and a segmented abdomen. They stay suspended just below the water surface most of the time, but can dive deeper when alarmed. The larvae spend most of their time feeding on algae, bacteria, and other microbes in the surface microlayer. The larval stage ranges from about four to ten days, varying with species, water temperature, and food availability.
The pupa does not feed and like the larva, it’s also sensitive to shadows, ripples, and similar disturbances in the water. The pupa can swim actively by flipping its abdomen, and it is commonly called a "tumbler" because of its swimming action. After about 1-4 days (depending on temperature) the pupa's skin splits along the back; the adult slowly struggles out and rests on the water surface.
Male mosquitoes usually live a mere 5 to 7 days. With ample food, proper temperature and avoidance from predators, females of some species can live for up to five months. Normally females will only live for about 2 weeks. After each blood meal, the female mosquito rests for a few days then will lays her eggs and the life cycle is renewed.