Questions tagged [bugs]

All types of creepy crawlies which bite, agitate, or fascinate those enjoying the great outdoors.

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36
votes
10answers
8k views

What should I do to avoid ticks other than wear particular clothing?

Today I've learnt that one can't vaccinate against Borreliose, also known as Lyme Disease. I've thought that I can't get that (yeah, that was stupid) and so didn't really care about ticks. However, ...
31
votes
2answers
5k views

"Due to the sheep in the settlement the surrounding area has no mosquitoes"

I was surprised by this Visit Greenland statement on Qassiarsuk: Due to the sheep in the settlement the surrounding area has no mosquitoes. Does that make sense? Is there any reason why the ...
26
votes
9answers
10k views

How to keep bees out of canned beverages?

I drink canned beverages when I'm gardening and camping. I know several people who have ended up in the hospital due to swallowing bees that were stuck in their beverage (stung in the mouth). How do ...
26
votes
11answers
12k views

How to fight bugs when hiking?

What's the best way to repel flies and bugs when hiking in summer? Where I hike is not really humid (southern California) but it's hot on summer days and a lot of insects and flies gather around me ...
22
votes
8answers
23k views

What can I do about those obnoxious biting flies?

In addition to Mosquitos, many of us northwoods campers have been made victim to the vast swarms of biting flies. Despite slathering myself with DEET, they don't seem deterred, and they especially ...
20
votes
2answers
3k views

What coastal creature leaves braid-like trace that has clear landing and take off points?

June 29 around 8 PM EST (within 40 minutes after downpour) the depicted trace was found in swash zone at Jacob Riis Park in NY. For reference the boot size is 12.
19
votes
8answers
1k views

What proven alternatives are there to DEET?

DEET is an effective mosquito deterrent, but there are many reasons it cannot be used. Per the CDC, cuts, eczema, and being a kid are all problems if you want to use DEET. What proven alternatives ...
19
votes
2answers
5k views

Identify this insect found indoors in Ireland with a double tail and antennae

About 6 months ago I noticed a new friend in my apartment. It lived in my bathroom and only came out during the night (not sure how it knows when it is nighttime if there are no windows in the ...
19
votes
1answer
6k views

What is this red bug infesting some trees in southern Germany?

I've just recently moved to Europe (southern Germany), so this might be a common sight to someone who has been living here for longer. Yesterday I noticed dozens of these insects walking on the ...
18
votes
11answers
2k views

What are some effective ways of reducing itching from a mosquito bite?

There are a lot of options for trying to prevent mosquito bites (DEET on skin, permethrin on clothing, mosquito nets while sleeping, etc.), but what about after you get bitten? What is the most ...
18
votes
1answer
20k views

Are all Ants and Termites edible?

Watching wildlife shows you frequently see omnivores (i.e. bears) eating ants and termites. We have the existing Q&A Eating ants/termites on outdoor expeditions explaining that some ants and ...
18
votes
3answers
23k views

Is permethrin safe for cats after it dries?

I'm concerned about ticks and want to treat some of my outdoor gear with Permethrin, a spray-on very persistent treatment against ticks and mosquitoes, to reduce the chances that I'll bring home ticks ...
18
votes
3answers
3k views

Does shaving help prevent tick bites?

This one is based on an actual experience - One summer I went on a trail through waist-high grass with a friend. We were both wearing shorts, but my friend had hairy legs, while mine were shaved. ...
17
votes
5answers
44k views

How to deal with little flies flying into the eyes?

There's one thing which can spoil my day outdoors. Those are the little flies which happen to fly directly into my eyes. I work on a computer and my eyes are dry and over-sensitive. If such an insect ...
16
votes
6answers
5k views

How to deal with hordes of flies in outdoor toilets?

In countryside (rural) tourism, especially when it is single or few houses somewhere in the middle of nowhere (woods), instead of having a water system including proper bathroom one sometimes gets a ...
16
votes
4answers
3k views

What type of mosquito repellent is most effective?

There are many different kinds of insect repellents and bug sprays on the market: sprays and lotions, chemical and natural, huge percentages of DEET and lower percentages, etc. What type of bug ...
15
votes
6answers
641 views

Back country solution to itchy insect bites

On a recent walk I got bitten to death by midgies. I was itching all day until I got home and put some antihistamine cream on them. Is there anything available (plants, etc.) that I could of applied ...
15
votes
6answers
9k views

Wasp repellent for an object/area?

I have a camera setup outside. Wasp seem to enjoy nesting in and around this camera. I know there are all kinds of wasp killers but is there anything I can do to repel wasps from nesting in and around ...
15
votes
1answer
10k views

Do CO2-based mosquito traps work?

My parents get a lot of mosquitoes in their garden during the summer. We've tried torches with citronella additives in the oil, but this has not been effective. I don't want to install a UV-based ...
14
votes
5answers
30k views

Eating Matches to repel insects?

I have heard that eating the tips off a few match heads can help keep the bugs off of you. Supposedly you sweat out the sulfur and it repels the bugs. Has anyone else heard this or is there any truth ...
14
votes
4answers
3k views

Is there a mesh mini-tent on the market that covers head, shoulders and arms, allowing you read comfortably in buggy terrain?

I like to read for a couple of hours after getting into my sleeping bag, and I don't like to use the tent unless the weather is bad. So usually I am lying propped up against my pack (food removed) ...
13
votes
2answers
3k views

Overtreated a backpacking outfit with permethrin. Safe to wear?

I purchased a spray-bottle of Sawyer 0.5% permethrin to treat some of my clothing in preparation for a backpacking trip. The spray nozzle turns out to have been quite a bit more generous than I ...
13
votes
2answers
4k views

What mosquito nets can be used while camping?

When camping in areas where mosquito-borne diseases are endemic, what options are there in terms of mosquito nets? The mosquito nets I've seen are meant to be hung above a bed and tucked under the ...
13
votes
2answers
11k views

Will bug repellent repel deer?

I was wondering whether the deer would be able to smell bug repellent if you are wearing some while out hunting. Is there a specific type of bug repellent that can be used that is less likely to make ...
13
votes
1answer
570 views

What are these strange insect nodules on my front porch?

Twice this summer, I've found some little brown domes / nodules attached to the window sills or the porch railing. They seem to be made by some sort of insect and I think when I removed them, there ...
12
votes
3answers
4k views

What is the best way to manage Scottish midges?

I have seen some posts that mention midges and midge spray. I am wild camping in Scotland in August. Should I be worried about them? Is there anything else a part from midge spray I can use to keep ...
11
votes
3answers
13k views

How should I remove a leech?

Once a leech is attached, what is the proper way to remove it? (I'm assuming that the method would generic for all leeches, but if there are special kinds, please note that).
11
votes
1answer
13k views

Tiny crab/bug in Pacific NW; makes shell out of rocks/sticks. What is it?

We encountered these guys in a small inland (freshwater) creek in southern WA. There were hundreds, covering low flat rocks in the water; every one carrying a shell made out of either tiny rocks, or ...
11
votes
1answer
529 views

How would a dragonfly get to above 13,400 ft (4000m)?

I found this dragonfly, here, at around 13,400 ft. The coordinates are 43°10'52.96"N, 109°39'17.74"W if anyone would like to check the location themselves. It didn't look like it was moving and as ...
10
votes
4answers
2k views

How to reduce pain of wasp stings?

Assuming I am not allergic, or showing signs of allergic reaction, what's the best way to treat multiple yellow jacket (a type of wasp) stings in the outdoors while hiking/backpacking? My key concern ...
10
votes
1answer
518 views

What will this bright green caterpillar with small turquoise spots turn into?

We found this beauty in our yard: It was 10 cm long and it was crawling pretty fast. What made it even more spectacular were the little turquoise spots on it. I suppose it will be a butterfly (but ...
10
votes
1answer
7k views

When is the midge season in Scotland?

What time of year are the the dreaded midge's in Scotland at their worst? I've only really been into the Higlands in Winter and I would prefer to avoid the worst time for these if possible.
9
votes
2answers
1k views

How dangerous is a swarm of bees?

Sometimes, bees will split from a hive, and a bunch of them (including a new queen bee) will swarm, and move to build a new hive. As you can see, there is an awful lot of bees huddled together around ...
9
votes
1answer
2k views

What is the species of this spider? Is it venomous?

I found this tonight on the external wall: Location: UK (south) I have a feeling it is a young green fang spider, please correct me if I am wrong. And the most important question: is it venomous?
9
votes
1answer
527 views

What built these mud structures (Ohio, USA)?

I found these structures while hiking in Wayne Township, Clermont County, Ohio, USA, on June 7, 2016, at approximately N 39° 12.5 W 084° 04.0. I only had my phone, and not a real camera, so sorry for ...
9
votes
1answer
3k views

Is there any repellent against wasps, bees and hornets?

On my trip I've been accompanied by a few wasps. I don't know what attracted them but they were trying to sit on me, which wasn't comfortable to me, since a bite of a wasp is causing by me a swelling ...
9
votes
2answers
1k views

Is there any effective repellent against deer flies (Lipoptena cervi)?

Is there any effective repellent against deer flies (Lipoptena cervi)? It should be safe for humans as well as dogs. All related information I could find is about a different deer fly (Chrysops).
9
votes
1answer
211 views

How effective are mosquito repellents for people who are mosquito magnets?

This question asks "What type of mosquito repellent is the most effective?". It's a great question. Now that we may have an idea about what is best to use, I want to know how effective are even the ...
8
votes
1answer
7k views

Is this tick or spider?

I found this bug in my back yard and walls outside of my house. Can you help me identify? I was worried if this is a tick.
8
votes
1answer
742 views

What are Miner bees, and how do they differ from other bees?

While walking in a state park in New Jersey last week, my husband and I came upon what looked like anthills. This small sign was posted on a nearby tree: "Please don't step on the mounds of dirt. ...
8
votes
2answers
269 views

Best field remedy for small cockroach in the ear

What are best methods for non-medically-trained personnel to remove a small cockroach from their own or someone else’s ear?
8
votes
1answer
77 views

Are any natural insect repellents effective against fleas?

Are any natural insect repellents effective against fleas? Although very effective, DEET products are controversial and many people have shied away from their use in favor of natural products with ...
7
votes
2answers
815 views

Using paddles to support a bug net

Would it be possible to use canoe paddles - and eventually some cords and beach stakes - to hang a bug net such as this? Our paddles will be about 2 meters (6.5 feet) long and can be split in half, ...
7
votes
1answer
2k views

What is this black and white spider with a bowl/tube web in England?

I was walking my dog through high grass, in England. We came across a big spider. The web was almost like a bowl/tube. The spider was black but the back part was big and a white colour. We avoided ...
7
votes
2answers
245 views

Headlamp and flies

Post-monsoon we have lots of flies and insects in the forests. I was hiking up an easy trail last weekend. It got dark and I still had a couple of hours of walking distance to cover. With no light ...
7
votes
1answer
14k views

Identify what bit me by the mark it left (note: potentially graphic, but also beautiful, photos)

Let's please begin with the understanding that I have already sought and received professional medical advice. Also, about two weeks have passed, my heart and lungs still work and nothing has turned ...
7
votes
1answer
123 views

Flying insects enjoying broccoli flowers

Do you recognize these flying insects that seem to enjoy broccoli flowers? I have several almond trees around, and bees are busy these days but I'm not sure these particular insects are of any ...
6
votes
2answers
1k views

Under what wilderness conditions is becoming infested with lice a possibility and what precautions should one take to avoid it?

I may have reacted without thinking to the question about dealing with lice because I have never worried about getting lice on a wilderness trip. Upon reflection, I find I am genuinely interested in ...
6
votes
3answers
22k views

What is this tiny round shiny black bug that bites?

Can anyone tell me what type of bug this is? I found two of them in my bed in Tennessee, United States. It's not a tick. The shell is hard. It was alive and you could see it moving. It's .016", ...
6
votes
2answers
206 views

When do insects normally hatch from insect houses?

I have a bug house and it looks as if several insects have laid in the house over the spring/summer. All of the bamboo seems to be clogged up and has been for a couple of months. Are there still ...