Everglades Exploration Network


Likely this has been asked a million times, but how do people keep the bug situation tolerable? please refer me to any links if there is already an answer to this question...

we are going to do the Chatham R loop out of Choko, starting Feb 26, for 4 nights in canoes.  2 of my trip mates bought a suspendable mosquito net, mosquito mesh pants, shirt, and gloves, and head nets.

I just have a head net with drawstring closure, and 100% deet.   I will go to the thrift store and get long sleeved white bidness shirts and light colored pants.  What SHOULD I be wearing/doing to have fun, and not be overly paranoid and annoyed by the mosquitos?

I grew up in Orlando (pre-Disney) but (or as a result of) have a low tolerance for mosquitoes...

thanks for any tips,


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DEET (Ben's100) did not work AT ALL

on the burning midges on East Cape last March.  I have heard something oily is better.

An old Northern trip where DEET does work. Spray it on the back of your hand and use the back to apply all over. Never never use the palm of your your hand. Work in back and in your ear with your knuckles.

" Permethrin helps. I was told you could spray old Thermacell pads to refresh them but I havent tried it."

This may be something only a chemist geek (like me) would know or care about, but...

Permethrin (like the clothing sprays) and Allethrin (like in Thermacell pads) are both synthetic pyrethrums -first extracted from chrysanthemums, the flowers,  which were known to "naturally" repel some bugs.

Remember those old green "mosquito coils", that burned all night like a miniature smudge or punk?  Guess what they were/are made of?  Yep, the very same flowers, and therefor have the same active ingredient.  And yes... they work just as well as Thermacells (at a much lower price).  Of course, they are much more likely to burn holes in your tent floor... but I find the smokey odor almost nostalgic!

Interesting. I was also told you probably could burn broken pieces of mosquito coil in your Thermacell but again I havent tried it.

Hi everybody, thanks for all the great tips! 

we did a 5 day trip on the Buffalo R in Arkansas a coupla years ago.  One of the guys had one of those bug zappers, pretty funny...

I ordered the Thermacell Lantern and some refills, and the Repel for clothes and gear, also got the OR head net with metal ring which has no see um mesh, some 100% deet (Bob's), some Ecosmart non-deet for skin applications, and a coupla white l/s shirts at the thrift store.  I remember when I was a kid the drive in movie theater in Winter Park sold those coils, and also had DDT trucks spraying up and down the aisles. I might grab a few of the coils at Home Depot (they also sell the Thermacell stuff).  So at least now I am filled with false bravado regarding the bugs, enough to get me on the water, anyway...Looking forward to the trip, have enjoyed a lot of the photos posted on the site, as well as the trip reports...

Gary you just brought back childhood memories.

Four of us were sleeping in a tent on the beach in Grassy Key a loooong time ago. Had a coil burning in the tent, about 3am chinese fire drill starts. Seems landcrabs found the hole created when the damn coil fell over & they took over the tent, they ran in, we ran out...it just wasn't quite that orderly.


Once we realized it was just crabs, we retook the housing, but, just minutes earlier... everyone's sound asleep...something walks across somebody's face in the middle of the night...and then the guy next to you screams like the living dead are getting him...everybody's running for their lives!.


Ahhh the good old days!

An old solution is Avon Skin So Soft (Oil or Lotion) works for the no-see-ums.  I have'nt tried it in a while but it was the go-to lotion.  Tent mesh should be tight to keep out the no-see-ums. Factory No-see-um screen is 400 holes per square inche or (20x20), but I think that is a bit to open. My tents have 600-800 holes per square inch. To measure your tents take a pencil and mark a white paper with a 1 inch square, then hold it under your screen and put a dot in each hole along two sides of the square (length and width) then multiply. Another trick is using about 1/2 can of Yard Gard to fog around the tent area. It works if its not to windy.

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