Nasty bites there, on the kid, not nice for anybody.
I've been a gardener by trade since 1989 and found in the early 90's, (The old way, by going to a library and looking it up in books, Internet
weren't there like it is back then.) that Gnats which are common in the UK, as well as Mossies and other blood attracted flying pests, are
attracted to people with high glycemic indexes, kids eating too much sugar, Alcoholics and some diabetics etc
An adult who doesn't use a lot of sugar and doesn't drink regularly, will have a very high blood sugar level if having a few beers on the weekend in
the garden, not just Alcoholics, all Alcoholic beverages will significantly raise ones glycemic index during consumption until it's processed out of
the body, 24-72hrs average, spirits don't but brewed and fermented Alcohol all contains a lot of sugar and you process it to your bloods, so seeming
a delicious meal to Mosquito's because they smell the sweetness from your perspiration.
[Never been bothered by Mossies myself but felt for those who were/are so looked into this donkeys years ago, Wasps seem to like ganging up on me
though, lucky i can get stung 10-20 times, more, and not bat an eyelid, no really, couldn't care less, it's happened a few times in my career,
attacked by swarms of Wasps, i just cleared them off and carried on working when they'd gone, just ignoring loads of stings on my back and arms etc,
i'm strange though, an ex boss would be in fatal anaphylaxis with one sting and had to carry Adrenalin in case of emergency, funny old world ain't
Those people having a real problem with these Mossies being attracted to them and hiving in attacks and such.
Should look at what sugars they are taking in and what their glycemic levels are.
If you consume a lot of sugar then cut it down during the summer and your bloods will not seem so tempting to them, they may still go for you if you
actually walk into a swarm as they hive under trees and near/over bodies of still water, puddles, water trapped in junk like tyres/tin cans and the
like etc, but if you are just sitting away from them in your gardens, parks wherever, they should find you less attracting if you don't eat too much
[Trees and ponds etc, one cannot do much about, but look around if no trees and ponds are nearby, find the water they are near and keeping close to,
they always hive near water for the humidity and reproduction, they hive under tree canopies because of the leaf transpiration raising local humidity
gives them ideal microclimate when there's full sun baring down but will invariably originate from still water nearby, if no ponds/marshes/still
water bodies etc, there must be junk with water trapped in it, remove the junk and Mosquito populations will lessen and less pests to bother people
It may pay to find out where they are breeding and try to get your local environment agency/council to act to clear things up to minimise the probelms
in your area. Especially if kids are getting bitten as severly as original posters! Councils have community responsibility so get them involved, if
they don't want to listen and there's a bad breeding ground somewhere, organise a pressure group, petition.
This is a long established link with flying insect blood feeders like Mossies etc, a fact.
Here's a quick Google search for you to look into this aspect of Mosquito attraction.
My passing this onto workmates and clients helped a lot over the years.
If you are overly troubled by Mosquito's, take note of this fact, they are attracted to high blood sugar levels in people.
Ergo, cut down sugar intake, it'll make a big difference, i've seen this myself with workmates and had plenty of feedback from clients and such that
it helped significantly, cutting down sugar intake during the summer when Mossies are about, Gnats and other flying blood feeders.
I've never suggested this before, but in a garden, a plate/wide bowl of sugar syrup (Granular sugar dissolved into a little warm water to saturation
point) placed a good distance away from where people want to sit or play outside in the garden may prove a distraction if you have fleshy leaved trees
and/or bodies of still water nearby they will smell the syrup over your blood but then it depends on how hungry they are, cutting your blood sugar
levels is still most effective though, just a thought.
It may not seem that nice, but mud stops them, a bit of clay 'slip' rubbed on arms and legs, neck and face, cheeks/forehead, will deter them as
well, a lump of modelling clay with water kneaded in until it is a slippy/sloppy/sloopy mud does the jobby, deters the pests and showers off easily
later, just makes one look dirty for a while but better than being eaten alive and kids get mucky in the garden anyway, also helps with catching
strong sun and burning.
Explain it's something tribal peoples do to keep Mossies away, you'd be telling them the truth and it may be more appealing to them.
[As an afterthought, Neem oil isn't very allergic, it's natural and however fatal to bugs it is safe for humans unless ingested in copious amounts.
so i thought adding a few drops to some clay slip to be rubbed onto skin will add an extra layer or protection as some residue will retain on skin
when clay falls/rubs off. This is an untried suggestion
so i'd try a small amount on a patch of skin on say the back of hands/calf/underarm
before using liberally, but it should be perfectly safe to add to water as per products standard dilutions and that to the clay to create the slip for
use so it is fully incorporated into the slip, Mosquito's will hate Neem smell more than be deterred by the mud, as they smell blood and sugar in the
blood they will smell the Neem but they don't have an olfactory sense similar to ours and it won't smell bad to users if diluted into clay, just the
Mossies. (NB, Neem is completely natural i wouldn't suggest using any other insecticide product, Neem is known not to cause skin allergic reactions,
i can't say that about anything else.)]
[edit on 1-8-2009 by DeltaPan]