Jump to content

Bugs are bugging me


Nanomite
Followers 1

Recommended Posts

I’m new and have found myself enjoying this game. I bought the gps for an entirely different reason (sailboat racing) and never expected to get involved in this but, it’s fun with the wife and son. However, several cases of chigger attacks has turned me off from hunting. I wanted to see my first benchmark and there is one close by but, it’s inundated with tall grass and large bushes so, I just left. I’ve soaked myself in Off, wore boots and long sleeves but, I still got those pesky buggers. I thought I’d worry about spiders and snakes but, no…. it’s those little freaking mites that have me scared. So… what do y’all do to avoid ‘em.

 

Sorry if this has been posted before.

Nanomite :rolleyes:

 

P.S. I have more finds than listed but for some stupid reason I changed my username to the bug that’s bugging me.

Link to comment

Chiggers. Yuck. I'm allergic to them -- one bite can leave a welt the size of a marble, and the itch can go on for weeks -- literally.

 

The only thing I've been able to do is to shower and change clothes as soon as possible. There's a short window of opportunity -- probably an hour -- before they start digging in.

 

I also avoid standing still for very long on sandy soil where they tend to congregate.

 

Once they've settled in, there's not much that can be done about them, though I've found Benadryl Gel seems to ease the itching and swelling. It's strong, and doesn't require actually touching the bites since it dabs on.

 

Thanks for posting about this. I'll be watching this thread, too :)

Link to comment

The following is from Wikipedia

 

They inject digestive enzymes into the skin that break down skin cells. They do not actually "bite," but instead form a hole in the skin and chew up tiny parts of the inner skin, thus causing severe irritation and swelling. The severe itching is accompanied with red pimple-like bumps (papules) or hives and skin rash or lesion on a sun-exposed area. For humans, itching usually occurs after the larvae detach from the skin. Chiggers are known for spreading from host to host.

 

We've been in a drought for 2.5 years until recently. The excessive rain may have added to this problem but, I'm not really sure.

 

C'mon you Southerners..... what do ya do to avoid them to begin with?

 

Thanks!

Nanomite <_<

Link to comment

I am really glad that I have no idea what a chigger is!

chigger.jpg

Chigger

 

The picture shows a mild infestation, at a time when the bites are starting to heal. :)

 

They usually end up in areas of the body more difficult to access. Think about where your clothes are closest to your skin, and where the skin is warmer -- places you really wouldn't want to scratch in public.....

 

When I'd get them as a child my mom would fill the tub with cool water and dissolve as much baking soda as the water could hold, and then I'd soak until my toes got pruny. It knocks down the itching for a few hours.

Link to comment

Chiggers seem to be especially bad this year here in the Dallas area. I have an amazing and unfortunate number of welts from this last weekend's caching trip. I take off-brand Benedryl to ease the itching and a calamine-based gel to cover the welts. They'll itchy as heck and it lasts about a week, sometimes a little longer.

100% DEET, long pants, and a long sleeve shirt still don't stop the dang things! <_<

Link to comment

Interesting user name, nanomite! Chiggers are the larvae of the Harvest Mite

 

Harvest mites (genus Trombicula; also known as red bugs, trombiculid mites, scrub-itch mites, berry bugs or, in their larval stage, as chiggers) are mites in the family Trombiculidae that live in forests and grasslands. In their larval stage they attach to various animals including humans and feed on skin, often causing itching. These relatives of spiders are nearly microscopic measuring 0.4 mm (1/100 of an inch) and have a chrome-orange hue. A common species of Harvest mite in Northern America is Trombicula alfreddugesi; in the UK the most prevalent Harvest mite is Trombicula autumnalis.

 

I don't usually have much trouble with them, but hubby has tremendous problems! We were in Maryland last August, and walked a path in a state park. Hubby ended up with bites at least up to his waist..... It seemed, despite taking a shower and discarding his clothes, that the chiggers travelled upward for a couple of days. The drive home to central Texas (Georgetown, just a couple of towns over from you) was rather miserable.

 

We don't geocache much during the summer months because it is just so darn hot... if we go out, it is early Saturday morning before the temperature rises much. Also avoiding the tall grassy areas does help some. I don't usually think about them because they really don't bother me much.

Link to comment

I've been trying a new (to the U.S. market) repellent that, instead of DEET uses Picaridin. I have found it to be highly effective!

 

According to studies and personal experience,it seems to last longer and is at least as effective as DEET but it is not nearly as irritating to skin, it goes on lighter, and will not damage synthetic materials like DEET will.

 

Most repellents only advertise it as being effective against ticks and skeeters, but I have found studies on the net and, again, by personal experience, that it works very will against chiggers and fleas.

 

But even at that, I still do "after-action" which includes hitting the shower as soon as I get home, wash all clothes, and put the shoes out in the sun.

 

The adult chigger is not the one that bites humans. It is the larval stage of the critter that does the damage. Once the attach, the damage, to some extent, is done. If you don't wash them off, they will stay attached for up to 4 days, then drop off and go grow into an adult.

 

The good news is that larval insect are not as tough as adults. A good hot shower will get rid of them and minimize the damage. Leaving shoes in the sun will kill any of them that are still on (or in) your shoes. If you may have some in your auto upholstery, leave your car out in the sun too and the sun and heat will take care of them.

 

Danger areas are tall growth in predominantly wet (tho not necessarily so) areas. Areas that are cut regularly (tended parks, etc.) are normally not a problem. They tend to live in the tops of plants (esp. grasses) and latch on to anything that brushes by. And as metioned earlier, they like dark, damp, and close places such as where tight underwear comes in contact, socks and tight shoes, waistbands, etc.

 

The best prevention ios to use a repellent and stay on non-foliated (gravel, dirt, paved) trails as much as possible. When in the brush, do not stand in 1 place very long and avoid kneeling or sitting down in the brush.

 

Google for chiggers for more details.

Link to comment

I HATE CHIGGERS! The worst thing out there!!!! They eat me up and leave literally crawling with itch!!!

 

I found they love any grass...cut or not! I lived in Missouri and am headed back in 2 weeks. Last time they had a ball with me...But not Sweetpea (My girlfriend) Some they seem to resist for some reason.

 

When I had bites all over my legs and ankles mostly (over 60) I would use clear finger nail polish...sounds funny, but thats what everyone told me to do. I tried it and it seemed to help with the itch, I was told it suffocates them, but by reading this sounds like they are gone at that stage. It helped me, but not enough!

 

I dont know what im gonna do this time, but im gonna try those sprays that have been mentioned for sure...Try the polish on a few early and see how it works, if nuthin else it helped me not to itch em as much.

 

I HATE CHIGGERS! I HATE CHIGGERS! I HATE CHIGGERS!...Try repeating that while your out, "mite" not help, but it will keep the weirdos away!!!! <_<

Link to comment

Thanks Semper and Moore9KSUcats…. Hope to meet ya sometime!

 

The funny thing is that as I type this…… It’s raining and I wonder how many of those larvae are being born. They seem to come in large clusters. It’s not like a mosquito bite with one or two but, 10 or 20 bites and somehow they move fast and by the time you’ve realized you have been bitten…. Stick a fork in it, you’re done.

 

I’m so happy our lakes are full but, caching is going on the back burner until I get some really hot dry weather unless Semper’s stuff works. I know… sounds ironic.

 

Oh also Moore… the name nanomite stems from a Star Trek episode.

 

A Nanomite w/ micromites <_<

Link to comment

Prevention

Mowing of briars, weeds, and thick vegetation and close clipping of lawns, to eliminate shade and moisture, will reduce chigger populations, and permit sunlight and air to circulate freely. Chigger larvae can penetrate many types of clothing, but high boots and trousers of tightly woven fabric tucked into stockings or boots help deter them.

 

Before going into an area where chiggers may be present, protect yourself by using a repellent such as deet (Off MGK, Muskol, Detamide, Metadelphene, Repel, Diethy-toluamide) or permethrin available at many drugstores or hardware stores. Deet-based repellents are effective for only a few hours, whereas permethrin-based repellents are for use only on clothing and effective for several days.

Link to comment

I have found the advice to wear long clothing to be in fact the opposite of what you need to do!

 

Ticks, chiggers, leeches and other creepy-crawlies use long pants and shirt sleeves to their advantage.

 

Wear shorts and loose short-sleeve shirts and carry bug spray (Off! works for me) and insect-repellent treated pads to wipe down your skin.

 

Buji makes poison ivy and oak pads that will help you as well.

 

With short loose clothing and a wipe-down every hour or two in the woods you should be fine!

 

If you are on an extended hike take a moment when you stop for a break to remove your shoes and socks and wipe or spray your ankles, on short trips into grass or woods do this when you return to the car.

 

Don't be prudish, either! Find a secluded spot to drop your britches and wipe your crotch area with these treated pads; chiggers and ticks love these soft warm moist areas and that's the last place you want them to dig in! Fat folks with a belly roll (Dunlop's Disease... your belly done lopped over your belt) need to get repellent into those folds as well... you don't need infected tick and chigger bites there!

 

With long and/or tight clothes the bugs are kept hidden and close to your skin until you get home - a bad plan!

Edited by TheAlabamaRambler
Link to comment

I have found the advice to wear long clothing to be in fact the opposite of what you need to do!

 

Ticks, chiggers, leeches and other creepy-crawlies use long pants and shirt sleeves to their advantage.

 

Wear shorts and loose short-sleeve shirts and carry bug spray (Off! works for me) and insect-repellent treated pads to wipe down your skin.

 

Interesting. The times I've been hit the most were when wearing shorts. So much so that I've generally abandoned wearing shorts even in the hottest part of the year if I think I'm gonna be bushwhacking at all.

 

The school of thought I've always subscribed to has been the clothing (especially if treated) adds another layer of protection between you and them. As for it being a highway for the little monsters, I can't see how the skin is any kind of a deterrent (pre-treatment aside) unless you are counting on them to find the hair follicles they like before moving too far up your legs. Which, on the other hand, may be a very good thing indeed! :D:mad:

Link to comment

 

If you are on an extended hike take a moment when you stop for a break to remove your shoes and socks and wipe or spray your ankles, on short trips into grass or woods do this when you return to the car.

 

Don't be prudish, either! Find a secluded spot to drop your britches and wipe your crotch area with these treated pads; chiggers and ticks love these soft warm moist areas and that's the last place you want them to dig in! Fat folks with a belly roll (Dunlop's Disease... your belly done lopped over your belt) need to get repellent into those folds as well... you don't need infected tick and chigger bites there!

 

With long and/or tight clothes the bugs are kept hidden and close to your skin until you get home - a bad plan!

 

I think you are right AlabamaRambler. I had one bad session with chiggers, then went and invested in insect repellant (by Avon, no clue what's in it).. and spray it on shoes/socks prior to putting them on, bare skin, inside of pants towards the bottom, all those other areas chiggers love get a quick spray prior to putting on pants. So far, it has worked well. Long pants or short hasn't mattered in my case.

 

Years ago the thing was to put sulpher powder on your shoes/socks. Ticks don't like that stuff either.

 

And bathe.. but generally by the time I get back to the house it would be too late for that to help much!

Link to comment

Do the permethrin sprays work on chiggers?

Absolutely! I swear by the stuff. Chiggers are the poster child for the axiom, "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure".

Something to remember with Permethrin, is it is an insecticide, where DEET is a repellent. Permethrin should never be applied to your skin. My method involves stuffing my pants legs into my socks, and spraying Permethrin from about mid-shin down, covering my lower pants legs, socks and shoes. I'll tuck my shirt into my pants, and spray my belt line. I'll also spray my hat. DEET gets applied to my arms, neck and face. The instant I get home, I hit the shower, scrubbing vigorously with one of those poofy, scrunchy thingies.

 

I suppose I should qualify my comments by admitting I don't always remember to take precautions. This morning I spent 3 hours in a scrub oak habitat DNF'ing a decon kit, wearing shorts and deck shoes. Even after a hot shower, I've got a few zillion itchy spots to remind myself of the error of my ways. :)

Link to comment

Interesting. The times I've been hit the most were when wearing shorts. So much so that I've generally abandoned wearing shorts even in the hottest part of the year if I think I'm gonna be bushwhacking at all.

Ah but wearing shorts was just part of my recommendation - when you got ate up were you also doing the other things I suggested?

 

As for the Avon product mentioned, Avon Skin-so-Soft is the vastly preferred skin protectant from both bugs and sun at nudist camps world-wide.

 

There's a reason for that beside the fact that oil can be fun. :)

 

It works! :)

Link to comment

Interesting. The times I've been hit the most were when wearing shorts. So much so that I've generally abandoned wearing shorts even in the hottest part of the year if I think I'm gonna be bushwhacking at all.

Ah but wearing shorts was just part of my recommendation - when you got ate up were you also doing the other things I suggested?

 

As for the Avon product mentioned, Avon Skin-so-Soft is the vastly preferred skin protectant from both bugs and sun at nudist camps world-wide.

There's a reason for that beside the fact that oil can be fun. :anitongue:

 

It works! B)

 

Do you know this from first hand experience...... NTTIAWWT B)

 

Nanomite :P

Link to comment

Stop by the feed store, get some wettable dusting sulpher. Use liberally on your pant legs and shoes before going into the grass/brush/jungle.

 

After the fact, apply clear nail polish to the chigger to suffocate it in your skin. When the polish loses it's grip and washes off, the chigger goes with it. Scratching only causes it to lose it's grip, and relocate.

 

Side note, some years back, I treated a quarter acre with this sulpher several days before working in the area. None of the approx. 10 people who had to access this area reported any bites by any known critter, chiggers, ticks, scorpions, or spiders. It was some months before a snake was seen in the treated area as well.

Link to comment

I am really glad that I have no idea what a chigger is!

 

I think they are mainly a scourge of the Deep South, I remember seeing it as a bug listed on a can of Off and wondered what it was and looked it up.

 

In yours and our neck of the woods, it is the skeeters and the ticks. The chiggers sound nastier, but Lyme disease from tick bites is probably (from a long-term perspective) worse than a chigger bite.

Link to comment

ewwww. that tears it. i am NEVER going down south, not for love or for money. i'm not even sure i'm venturing as far as massachusetts anymore.

 

all right God, what were you thinking on this one, huh? having a bad day? taking it out on the warm-blooded critters?

 

(for some reason sentiments like this find their way into my prayers and i have yet to be struck by lightning. still, you probably shouldn't stand too close.

 

...especially if you've been out in the tall grass.)

Link to comment

We use sulphur to ward off chiggers. It comes in a yellow powder and we put it into an old sock (one without holes) and pat it against our socks, pant legs and shoes before heading off into any grassy areas. I don't use it any higher on my body than pant legs. It will leave a powdery residue on your pants which will brush off easily. We are convinced that it helps. It's certainly worth a try.

Link to comment

The following is from Wikipedia

 

They inject digestive enzymes into the skin that break down skin cells. They do not actually "bite," but instead form a hole in the skin and chew up tiny parts of the inner skin, thus causing severe irritation and swelling. The severe itching is accompanied with red pimple-like bumps (papules) or hives and skin rash or lesion on a sun-exposed area. For humans, itching usually occurs after the larvae detach from the skin. Chiggers are known for spreading from host to host.

 

We've been in a drought for 2.5 years until recently. The excessive rain may have added to this problem but, I'm not really sure.

 

C'mon you Southerners..... what do ya do to avoid them to begin with?

 

Thanks!

Nanomite ;)

 

Well I am here to tell you they are not only a southern problem. I was born and raised to Kansas City Missouri and I was always ate up with them growing up it's a wonder I am not all scarred up from scraching them as my Grandmother told me I would be if I didn't stop scraching them. I was a Boy Scout Master for 18 years here in Texas and had my share of them until about 10 years ago I started taking garlic pills for a different reason and chiggers do not bother me any more. They still will bite me from time to time but if they do within 24-48 hours they leave me. They used to be in me for weeks before. I have tried the sulfer in a sock at scout camp and it worked fairly good however the socks and shoes smelled like sulfer all year so don't put it on anything that you want to keep for nice.

I forgot to say they like to get where your clothes are tight top of socks around you waist so another thing you could do that I have not nor will not try is to go caching naked.

Edited by dew cache
Link to comment

I tried a product I found at my local grocery store called BuggSpray. It's scented with vanilla so it's not as unpleasant to use. Found it very effective against mosquitoes and ticks. They have another product that is supposed to work for biting flies. Those demons made an appearance this weekend, so I'm going to give that one a try.

 

Chris

Link to comment

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Followers 1
×
×
  • Create New...