Can A Mosquito Get Drunk?

Party animals come in all shapes, sizes, and species, but one thing they have in common is that they enjoy getting into the alcoholic spirit. Granted, getting an elephant blackout drunk is probably out of the question because an elephant never forgets. But even these prodigious pachyderms pack a bit of drunk in the trunk. Psychologist Ronald Seiger tested elephants’ preferences for alcohol and found that they would gladly guzzle a beverage that’s 7 percent alcohol. After consuming 7 liters, the equivalent of 35 cans of beer, the lightweights among them began “growling” and rapidly flapping their ears. They swayed for hours, seemingly to prevent themselves from falling. Some intoxicated pachyderms downed as much as 75 liters of the alcohol solution, and one belligerent elephant chased the jeep containing the drink and attacked Seiger for refusing to supply more.

Honey bees also like a good buzz. Per the BBC, scientists them the solutions with sucrose and ethanol. The drunker they got, the less they flew, and the more they ended up on their backs. Researcher Dr. Julie Mustard observed that the bees “couldn’t coordinate their legs well enough to flip themselves back over again.” Drunk bees even fly upside down, according to Popular Science while inebriated fruit flies get super flirty or pass out, per the BBC. But what about the party poopers of the animal kingdom: mosquitoes

Mosquitoes suck at getting drunk

You might expect mosquitoes to be teetotalers, since they’re usually too busy sucking the life out of other creatures to be the life of the party. But according to the BBC, humans who’ve consumed booze are way more likely to be bitten by mosquitoes. Are pests trying to numb the ugliness of an existence spent spreading disease and torturous itching? Do they just enjoy the taste of cirrhosis? No one really knows, and scientists haven’t devoted much time to investigating the limits of mosquito sobriety. However, the insects are highly unlikely to get drunk while drinking you.

Popular Science writes that “to a mosquito, a blood meal that contains 0.2 percent alcohol is like drinking a beer diluted 25-fold.” These suckers do have a thing for fermented fruit in addition to your alcohol-saturated blood, but neither seems to phase them. So if you wanted to get a mosquito drunk off your blood, it would likely require a lethal amount of alcohol.

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