PDA

View Full Version : Skeeters



dropkick
2006-06-11, 03:35
Went to walk my dog this evening down by the river and was viciously attacked. Probably lost a pint of blood to those dang little vampires.

I know your going to say they don't plan things, but they waited for me to get a good distance down the trail before swarming, and then stayed with me all the way back.

And man did they swarm. Remember the commercials where a man would stick his arm in a box filled with mosquitos? Now double the amount that landed on that man's arm and put them on every exposed portion of my body. There were 2 or 3 mosquitos on every square inch. I killed hundreds of them.

Drove me nuts.
You would have thought I was in Minnesota.

Hope none of them were desease carriers.

No more walking by the river for awhile.

blackdog
2006-06-11, 05:30
This might sound like a strange question, but...

How were you dressed at the time of attack? What colour did your garments have? Did you have much clothes on? How much of your body was covered and with what materials?

You already told us that you walked by the river at the very time when mosquitos are the most active, but the way you dress is also significant. There might be things to change to make your experience more enjoyable the next time.

dropkick
2006-06-11, 07:49
This might sound like a strange question, but...
How were you dressed at the time of attack? What colour did your garments have? Did you have much clothes on? How much of your body was covered and with what materials?
You already told us that you walked by the river at the very time when mosquitos are the most active, but the way you dress is also significant.
I was dressed as badly as is possible, and in the contrasting colors that current mosquito theory says attracts them.Light tan cotton shorts, dark grey cotton t-shirt, yellow crocs (sandals).

I had also eaten a meal with high salt content for dinner, and drank a orange soda just before leaving for my walk.

It was approaching twilight as I started my walk.

I did everything right if I wanted to attract them.

There might be things to change to make your experience more enjoyable the next time.I'm changing one thing: I'm going up to the hills where there aren't any mosquitos.

blackdog
2006-06-11, 12:35
I was dressed as badly as is possible, and in the contrasting colors that current mosquito theory says attracts them.Light tan cotton shorts, dark grey cotton t-shirt, yellow crocs (sandals).
OK. Step by step...

Light tan cotton shorts
Polyester/cotton mixes or similar materials wick away the moisture better than cotton and thus keeps you cooler. Maybe even cool enough to use full-length pants. The less of your flesh you show to them the better.

Dark grey cotton t-shirt
Wear a very light-coloured t-shirt as the dark one you wore was the main attractor, i believe. You should also try wearing a shirt in a good wicking material. My own t-shirt is made of light grey coolmax but i wear a sand-coloured or khaki polyester/cotton shirt with full length sleeves most of the time. The shirt keeps me cooler than the t-shirt, but the latter causes less chafing.

The yellow crocs
Shoes are a real problem. ...or rather the socks are. Crocs have lots of openings for mosquitos, but with a cool sock that wouldn't matter. The coolmax socks i modified for use with my chaco z/2 sandals work quite well, but i wish there was some kind of elastic pertex out there to test. The main problem is having socks at all. To most people it's too much added work to have them. I often resort to spraying my feet with Autan pump spray repellant (http://www.autan.com/nqcontent.cfm?a_id=174) (don't know if it's available in the US, though), but only in evenings.

I've never tried wearing crocs myself, but i can't imagine they would be as airy as my sandals. Do they keep feet cool enough or do they add heat to the rest of the body for mosquitos to zoom in on?

Anyway... Yellow garments has a tendency to attract flies, although of the non-sucking kind. Is that true for your situation too?


I had also eaten a meal with high salt content for dinner, and drank a orange soda just before leaving for my walk.

It was approaching twilight as I started my walk.

I did everything right if I wanted to attract them.
I'm changing one thing: I'm going up to the hills where there aren't any mosquitos.
Sounds like a good idea. :)

Salt makes you sweat less which makes your "heat signature" easier to find for the mosquitos. Don't know about the orange juice, but most citrus fruits have a repelling effect... And twilight was indeed the worst time of the day, yes.

Maybe you could consider this to be a scientific experiment and try different things to find out what would fool the skeeters of your neighbourhood? I for one would be very interested in knowing the results.

KLeth
2006-06-12, 02:21
I doubt that they "see" color but as many incests they probably "see" infrared or ultraviolet - Mosquitos probably see infrared meaning that clothing that disperse or absorb infrared will be very good. Based on Blackdogs listings it looks like the case anyway.
Mosquitos are also attracted to the smell of amid/urea/amonia which means that the cleaner and less sweaty a person is, the less interest they are shown by the mosquitos. - This is also why you always get a swarm around you when peing in the bushes or grass . . .
Some say that eating garlic is good, but the result varies from person to person.
My in-laws tried acupuncture against mosquitos but were still eaten to their great surprise . . . . . :rolleyes:
I have not very good expirience with Autan, since it sometimes seems to enrage the mosquitos . . . . . Especially the Swedish killer mosquitos.
I prefer Jungleoil or pure DEET but I only use it on clothes and only when really needed since it's suspected to cause cancer (like almost everything else).

dropkick
2006-06-12, 06:04
Shoes are a real problem. ...or rather the socks are. /.../ The main problem is having socks at all. To most people it's too much added work to have them. - (my opinion) If I'm wearing socks I might as well put on shoes.
I've never tried wearing crocs myself, but i can't imagine they would be as airy as my sandals. Do they keep feet cool enough or do they add heat to the rest of the body for mosquitos to zoom in on?Anyway... Yellow garments has a tendency to attract flies, although of the non-sucking kind. Is that true for your situation too?My Crocs don't keep my feet as cool as my sandals, but they make up for it by being extremely comfortable. Don't know if the color attracts insects as I haven't noticed it doing so.
Salt makes you sweat less which makes your "heat signature" easier to find for the mosquitos. Don't know about the orange juice, but most citrus fruits have a repelling effect... And twilight was indeed the worst time of the day, yes. A diet of high salt foods is said to attract mosquitos. So is eating or drinking sugar loaded foods. (I didn't drink orange juice, I drank an orange soda or orange pop) (Do you have orange pop in Sweden?)

Maybe you could consider this to be a scientific experiment and try different things to find out what would fool the skeeters of your neighbourhood? I for one would be very interested in knowing the results. So would I, and I would be glad to experiment except for one problem: I'm not insane!
Maybe we could get Iceman to do it. :biggrin:

Iceman
2006-06-12, 09:45
I'm not insane![/B]
Maybe we could get Iceman to do it. :biggrin:

This would not be a good idea, as I would throw off the test results due to my large heat signature, and also due to the fact that I create my own weather...your results may differ... :biggrin:

john pickett
2006-06-12, 15:32
"due to the fact that I creat my own weather"

Iceman,
Way I hear it, you also create your own gravitational field. :damnmate:
John Pickett

KLeth
2006-06-14, 02:39
Now now - Be nice to Iceman :angel: Just because he dares, what we only dare think about . . . . And is honest about it.
I guess it's some kind of letting out the inner child/boy and everybody knows that the only real difference between men and boys is the price of their toys :biggrin:

blackdog
2006-06-14, 14:07
Dropkick, since Iceman already has his hands full with his own sub-meteorological project, i think it's only fair that you take on this one. But fear not. When i suggested the experiment it didn't include you as a target. I only wanted to know if one of the improvised experiments we once did here would give the same result over there.

This is what we did.

One day two years ago we were outdoors, mapping a small river, and the mosquitos seemed to favour one of us. As the day heated up we decided to leave some of our clothing at a point we knew we would pass on our way back. I had some string in my backpack and it allowed us to hang up three flanel shirts and a microfleece sweater. (Yep, that sweater was mine, it was a cold morning). We had been talking anti-skeeter measures all week before that so we bet on who could predict the outcome the best.

Most bets were on the fleece sweater. It would surely attract most of the skeeters, according to my collegues. I were the only one to bet on a dark brown shirt. Nobody voted on the pale jeans-blue one or the almost equally pale green/white one. I was pretty sure that i would loose but put my faith in the fact that the sweater was a rather pale grey.

We went on to survey and map things out throughout the day and had a blast doing it because one of us insisted that he could walk much closer to the riverbed than the rest. Sure enough, it's not possible to get any closer to the water than he did. He was soaking wet and cursing most of the way back to the "skeeter betting line".

Once he got there he didn't get much happier. There were almost no mosquitos on my sweater. I got a second dose of laughter as it dawned on him that his shirt was the "winner" and that he owed me money. The bets were tiny but the loss in prestige was huge. He didn't talk as much about his special repellant mix after that. Btw, he really needs strong stuff as he's probably the best skeeter-magnet out there.

So the skeeter-line experiment is what i wanted you to try. It's an easy and harmless way to find out which clothes to wear...

(Oh yes... We decided to have a rematch later with newly laundered (un-sweaty) garments. his brown shirt still lost.)