Relieve the Itch… Midges & Sand Flies – facts/remedies

(Original article by Caravan Living but has been adapted and updated) Have you ever been on a caravan or camping trip and been bitten (or eaten alive) by those pesky bugs known as midges or sand flies? Well I have and it isn’t pleasant. Many of our guests have also been a target and while it is unfortunate – it happens, so we thought best to share some tips and tricks to help keep the little buggers away, or at least at bay. Midges live in the sand and mud of swampy waterways and mangroves. They are very small and even though they do look like a fly, they are too small to see their wings; they look like a small piece of fine dark cut hair, so this makes them difficult to see. Because they are so small, they can easily fly through normal fly screens. Midges will attack all animals, so you will generally notice birds reacting to being bitten. For those of you with pets, you may have noticed the same. It is said that midges/sand flies do not bite but actually urinate on you – so we thought I should investigate that further and this is not correct. According to the Department of Medical Entomology of the University of Sydney, they are blood suckers and inject saliva into the skin to allow easy extraction of the blood. They bite during dawn and dusk when there is little to no wind, so best to avoid swampy areas during these times. Locals in midge-prone areas tend to build up immunity over time, whereas for travellers – they generally do not, so we recommend that all our guests take preventative measures (and stock up on remedies), just in case!  Generally you will find once you have been bitten – the … Continue reading Relieve the Itch… Midges & Sand Flies – facts/remedies