Tuesday, September 27, 2022


Don’t feed the mosquitoes – Protecting yourself from insects

By Greg Illes
Let’s face it – the lovely forests and streams that we all enjoy when we are out-and-about are fantastic havens for all manner of obnoxious bugs. Flies, ticks and mosquitoes are not only at the top of the annoying list, but also the most likely to spread uncomfortable or even serious diseases.

Whether it’s peace or health or both, we all strive to keep those pesky bugs away from ourselves and our loved ones — but it’s not always an easy task.

If you’re outdoors and want to stay there, you’ll probably want to use an insect repellent. Fortunately, today repellents can be found embedded in fabrics, and you can wear such clothing without having to soak your skin in DEET. For on-skin repellents, DEET is commonly acknowledged as the most effective; however, health concerns prompt some folks to seek out more “natural” deterrents. Find all types of bug repellents on Amazon.

Frequently, it’s simplest just to hide out. Screened enclosures work (sometimes), and this includes the window screens on your RV. For the most persistent and tiniest of creatures, though, you might need to resort to camping tent-style screens (they’re made with a finer mesh), or even to overlaying your RV’s coarse screens with a layer of mosquito-proof material. There are also clothing-style screens, from mosquito hats up to full-body suits, if you want to be sheltered but still move around in the outdoors.

Sometimes, a simple relocation can make a night-and-day difference. One time we were assaulted by literally dark clouds of mosquitoes in southwestern Oregon. But only 6 miles down the road, there was not a bloodsucker in sight. It turned out the clouds were around a nearby lake with its egg-friendly shores, while the heavenly air was adjacent to a rushing river that didn’t promote mosquito larvae. Higher altitudes are also less friendly to flying bugs.

Don’t casually leave things around or wear clothing that inherently is more appealing to bugs. Food for ants and dark-colored clothing for mosquitoes are obvious no-no’s.

We don’t have enough space here to explore all this in-depth, but do a web search for such topics and you’ll find a wealth of knowledge. Be prepared and educated, and you can seriously reduce your bug exposure.

photo: wikipedia/public domain

Greg Illes is a retired systems engineer who loves thinking up RV upgrades and modifications. When he’s not working on his motorhome, he’s traveling in it. You can follow his blog at www.divver-city.com/blog.



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Sharon B
2 years ago

Dark clothing is also what I am reading to be a no no

John Koenig
2 years ago

 dark-colored clothing for mosquitoes are obvious no-no’s.”

I’m a little confused. Is the author saying that dark colored clothing attracts mosquitoes?

Garry Hammond
2 years ago
Reply to  John Koenig

Mosquitoes like to hide where it is dark, and they are less visible.
While they are not necessarily “attracted” to dark, they will avoid light, and white where they can easily be seen by predators.

2 years ago

Ticks love me, I’ve picked more than a few off me. If you have a subscription go to ConsumerReports.org and search insect repellents to help make your choice on which to buy. With scoring up to 100 the highest rated one was 96, the one I chose rated 90 (4th place) Repel Lemon Eucalyptus Insect Repellent, it does not damage clothing. All DEET products can damage clothing. The repel comes in a small container, I have one thrown in all the cars and two in the RV. I’ve used this product with great success for about 5-6 years and it continually rates high on CR . If I was going out of the county into an area know with mosquito disease, then I would take DEET product.

2 years ago
Reply to  Jane

I was going to post about Repel Lemon Eucalyptus Insect Repellent also. Mosquitos love me. I’m serious. When camping, friends and family say they like to sit next to me because the mosquitos are so attracted to me they won’t bother them! A few years ago I discovered Repel Lemon Eucalyptus Insect Repellent. It doesn’t stink like DEET and it really works

2 years ago

I use tea tree oil. About 5-6 drops in a small spray bottle filled with water. It works well for me.

Helen Fisher
2 years ago
Reply to  Shirley

Do you think that would be safe for dogs also?

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