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Thinking Outside The Box
What are No-See-Ums, Where do they live, and how to avoid them.
What are No-See-Ums?
No-see-ums, also known as sand flies or biting midges, are small bugs about 1-3 mm in length. They can be a nuisance and even harmful at times because they do bite humans and often and leave irritated marks on the skin similar to a mosquito bite. There are many different species of no-see-ums but in all of these species only the female have adapted to blood-sucking because the eggs need blood to develop. They are also the primary way that diseases like leishmaniasis and pappataci fever (both commonly names sandfly fever) are spread.
Where do they live?
No-see-ums are prevalent all around the world, from Florida and New Jersey all the way to Australia. Below is a map showing species density of sandflies, where they currently reside and possible future spread of the population.
When do they come out and how do you avoid them?
No-see-ums cannot see in the dark and therefore usually do not bite in the dark. They are most commonly active at dusk or dawn and this is when they usually start to become a nuisance because of their biting. There are many ways to prevent this biting. Some of these ways include CO2 mosquito traps, long covering clothing, applying insect repellent with DEET, and avoiding places where they live, and SCREENEZE® when used with Insect Screen #2020.