AIBU To want to destroy them all as they are taking over my area...

(41 Posts)
Latara Fri 03-May-13 13:03:57

'Them' being the Biting Insects - Mosquitoes, Blandford flies, midges (but mainly the mozzies).

I live near a river and i am seriously sick of being bitten despite using insect repellent.

I've had cellulitis in the past due to insect bites; and a friend's husband has had anaphylaxis! Also my Mum is recovering from a bad bite to the face that made her eye droop - she looked as if she'd been punched.

Please can i have suggestions of good insect repellents so i can enjoy this weather - cat friendly repellents if possible please!

TheseFoolishThings Fri 03-May-13 13:06:05

Eeek - what a nightmare. I don't know if this works for everyone but I tip I picked up when I lived in Africa was to drink lots of tonic water. Apparently the quinine is a natural repellent? I thought it splendid advice, especially if the tonic was mixed with gin and drunk in large quantities grin

Latara Fri 03-May-13 13:08:24

Maybe the gin will help me ignore the mozzies!

Latara Fri 03-May-13 13:08:57

Does anyone know if Citronella really works to deter mosquitoes?

TeamEdward Fri 03-May-13 13:10:41

1) Eat marmite.
2) Move.

HTH grin

DoubleMum Fri 03-May-13 13:13:04

Avon So Soft (not marketed as an insect repellant) is supposed to really work.

Latara Fri 03-May-13 13:14:20

Marmite.. hmm don't want to put off the nice single male neighbour down the road! (Sorry to all Marmite-lovers).

At present i'm trying a 'Jungle Formula Maximum' roll on - dotted on various places - the smell isn't great and i don't want my cat near it but it might work.

MaxPepsi Fri 03-May-13 13:16:05

I've heard the same about quinine - I think you can get tablets if you can't face a Gin first thing in the morning grin

Citronella works for me, however I don't live near a river.

Or light a few small fires - the smoke keeps them away!

Latara Fri 03-May-13 13:20:32

I will try lighting a Citronella candle when i'm out in the garden.

(Or just start smoking...)

Itchywoolyjumper Fri 03-May-13 13:26:52

I come from the West Highlands, where the midgies are plague. Midgie Machines are really popular up there because they work. They are really dear so you might want to club together with your neighbours to get one. Here's a link:

I've tried a lot of midgie repellents (and I mean a lot) and Skin So Soft is good and it doesn't smell or taste as horrible a quite a few of them. Also the Royal Marines use it on exercise grin
Midgie nets are really good but you look like a bee keeper and you have to take them off to eat.

Beamur Fri 03-May-13 13:29:36

Another vote for skin so soft as an effective and non toxic repellent - sold in little corner shops in the midgier parts of Scotland so it must work.
Those machines that the above poster refers too are also awesome - the numbers of flies they take up are immense.

Itchywoolyjumper Fri 03-May-13 13:30:08

Jungle formula, that takes me back a bit, OP.
Every Brownie BBQ I went to (although we called them sausage sizzles back them olden days) smelled of Jungle formula.

MaxPepsi Fri 03-May-13 13:32:20

You can also make your own oils for your skin?

Erm, trying to remember now but think you can use things like orange, rose, eucalyptus then mix it with olive oil (nice for your skin) and then rub on.

You'd be able to do the same with citronella too.

As for the smoke - my dad used to smoke a pipe - the only time we kids went near him when it was lit was when the midgies were out!!

Bunbaker Fri 03-May-13 13:34:09

I feel your pain. OH is a bug magnet and always reacts badly to being bitten. He has had countless holidays spoiled by insect bites. We looked at a house near a river once, but didn't take it because of the insect problem.

He finds that if he misses so much as a square inch of skin when applying insect repellent he will get bitten there.

Latara Fri 03-May-13 13:36:18

Is the 'Skin So Soft' made by Avon?

I will look at the oils idea.

Won't be smoking a pipe though!

MrsTwgtwf Fri 03-May-13 13:39:43

Can you get Avon stuff online? Some really good tips here, thanks from a fellow bug magnet. thanks

Itchywoolyjumper Fri 03-May-13 13:39:55

Skin so soft is by Avon. The Jungle formula works but it reeks and it get everywhere and tastes revolting.
If you are going to use citronella use the coils and use a lot of them, the candles are next to useless.

maddening Fri 03-May-13 13:42:38

How do you know the chap down the road isn't a marmite lover? I'm not suggesting smearing yourself in it and presenting yourself to him on his doorstep though but don't rule it out! <licks residue marmite>

I use Berrocca - take one as a fizzy drink every morning - it's not proven or dp they claim it works, but I heard about it on the Google so it must be trye.

And I'm all vitaminy amd minerally as a side effect, life is good.

<<scratches ankles>>

quoteunquote Fri 03-May-13 13:46:12

Plant lots of trees, they hate elderflower and you can make wine , cordials, jam and champagne . Plant lavender, where you like to sit.

Make sure there is no standing water anywhere, drains, gutters, plant pots, In Tobago they take anyone leaving any standing water really seriously, it community monitored, due to children dying from malaria, so they are really vigilant, no standing water, and Trinidad has a far worse problem because they don't have a policy of no standing water,

Bat boxes, lots and lots of bat boxes, bats are really fussy, if you read up on how to make them (most the advice is what not to do), you will realise that a lot that are offered for sale are pointless, they have to have a totally draft free, warm dry space, with exactly the right measurements for the layout of grooves, and perches, get it right and they will move in, we did a community project, and did a production line building day, a lovely person (bat trust) came along and gave free guidance,

If you get a few bats move in, they make a real difference, they eat their body weight in insects, we also live beside a river, It's very noticeable what a difference our bats make , when we go to similar locations.

just google bat box design, If everyone installed them the bats would sort out all the biting insects for us.

bats live for about thirty years, only start to breed when they are about ten and only have a baby every second year, so they need help, to re tip the balance.

Avon's skin so soft is good, as a repellant.

Crabtree and evelyn use to do a west indian sicilian lemon and limes eau de cologne, that was brilliant.

google Natural Insect Repellent buy the essential oils, and make your own spray, far cheaper.

Dh likes fishing on lochs - he has tried lots of midge repellents, he likes using olive oil. I can't vouch for it myself but you have my sympathy. Bog myrtle is supposed to be a natural repellent - you could grow some, or buy the oil to add to home made spray.

List of insect repelling plants.

fertilityFTW Fri 03-May-13 13:52:52

I used to swear by citronella oil (lived in the tropics near an area frequented by skeeters carrying dengue!) just slathered in on at dawn and dusk - but it's pretty strong scented so may not be practical for you. We also mosquito coils on the deck - placed in pretty clay ware - indispensable if sitting outside. Incidentally (if your skin isn't too sensitive), Tiger Balm takes the itch away - at least, it did for me - never left home without it.

quoteunquote Fri 03-May-13 13:59:02

eat lots of garlic, and vitamin B complex (marmite) or daily tablet.

and always sit next to a red head, as all biting insects prefer a red head.

I want baby bats, what a great idea quoteunquote - would be lovely community project for my local river.

We had bats near where I lived as a child. I have a memory of our cat leaping into the air and catching one when it flew into our house - we got it off her.

That link I posted also suggests:

"Natural Antihistamines are all around the fields and gardens during the summer. Nettles and plantain are weeds that grow all over Scotland, both have a natural anti-histamine action, useful when you have been bitten a number of times. Both may be taken as a herbal tea, nettles may be eaten as a soup, or you could rub the juice of the plants onto the skin."

thepig Fri 03-May-13 14:09:02

Oh for a minute there I thought this was another UKIP thread...

raisah Fri 03-May-13 14:12:08

Use lavendar oil, creepies dont like the smell of them.

BewitchedBotheredandBewildered Fri 03-May-13 15:00:43

There is a repellent spray called Off! that really works. It may be full of nasties and don't know what it smells or tastes like.

SirBoobAlot Fri 03-May-13 15:47:33

I thought this was going to be UKIP thread.

<slightly disappointed>

Lavender oil is really good, and the citronela candles.

I pretty much stopped getting bitten after I'd been taking B12 complete for ages. Still taking it so we'll see how I do this summer.
I'd prefer marmite though.
If we go anywhere mozzie infested I spray us all with Off.

Blandford flies are horrific! I'd never heard of them until we moved down south, and got bitten last summer. It came up in a lump the size of a tennis ball.

OP you have my sympathies as a fellow bug magnet. You can get DEET sprays which go on clothes rather than skin, but lots of people really don't like DEET (which is fair enough).

Daisymclines Wed 19-Jun-13 14:08:39

I feel pretty good about SkinSoSoft because the locals on Skye where I was seemed to be very fond of it - it was for sale in the very small Post Office. It's cheaper and way less chemically than DEET products. You can always stop using it if it doesn't work.

BTW - I found, when on holiday in Scotland, that midges seem quite selective about whom they bite - so the best thing might be to go with someone who is susceptible and that will distract the midgies from everyone else smile

pingusmumtoo Wed 19-Jun-13 15:35:53

You can get stuff called Smidge which is really really good! Google it!

eastendfareast Wed 19-Jun-13 15:39:08

Avon Skin So Soft is amazing. I live in Asia and its the onky thing that works reliably plus smells nice too. I use it on the whole family.

LulaPalooza Wed 19-Jun-13 15:47:34

This thread is making me itch! but thank you for posting it, Latara and thanks for the tips from everyone else. I had never heard of Blandford flies... I just Googled it and I think this is the little fucker that has been biting Mr F.

He's been playing footie in a park over in SW London and every single time he goes there he gets bitten somewhere below the knee by something and it comes up in a horrid yellow pus-filled bite. Now at least I think I know what it is! He's tried insect repellent which hasn't worked (although I suspect he's been a bit blokey putting it on and has missed patches). I'm going to get him some Skin So Soft.


florascotia Wed 19-Jun-13 16:13:32

Not suitable for v. young children under 4 yo, but I find a device like this helps, if one has unfortunately been bitten:

It does prickle a tiny bit when clicked on a bite, but I find the relief from days of itching is well worth the momentary discomfort.

Bat advice above = brilliant! Swallows and martins eat flies and midges, so suggest encourage them to nest, also.

Melty Wed 19-Jun-13 16:17:56

I think I have become immune to jungle formula..

I've been using something called incognito. Which apparently repels ALL insects. I stink of citronella.
I am curretly nursing 16 bites in various stages of healing.

Aniseeda Wed 19-Jun-13 16:26:44

Which Skin so Soft product do people use? I just looked it up and there are lots of different ones. Want to get some for my Dad who seems to be a bit allergic to bites and has had some really nasty ones recently.

eastendfareast Wed 19-Jun-13 16:31:57

I usually find aloe vera works well for me, that or making sure I'm sat near my sister, then they make a bee line for her instead. grin

Bat boxes sound like a fantastic idea. I'll be having a look for those later, might be something DD and I can do together.

eastendfareast Wed 19-Jun-13 16:33:56

My tip with it is to apply to all areas of bare skin. It's not like DEET where you spray it on wrists, this needs spraying and rubbing in well. If you do that it's amazing. I live in mozzie central and haven't found anything better.

Aniseeda Wed 19-Jun-13 18:31:05

Thanks eastendfareast I will order some for him grin

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