Sunday, May 27, 2018

Bug Season Has Arrived (Oh, Joy.)

We've all been hoping for a delayed and perhaps even less bothersome bug season.  We got the delayed part (because of our extreme dryness, I'm sure) but I can attest to the fact that the first ones that arrived today are not looking to be less bothersome.

To back up a little bit, some folks stopped by this afternoon to say hello to the little bantam rooster that now lives in our flock that the daughter (currently eighteen years old) raised as a newly hatched chick when she was ten years old.

Long story short, as so often happens in a sparsely populated community such as ours . . . years ago, this family had to move to a house in town where they knew they couldn't keep the rooster.  Friends of ours who lived out in the boonies near our fist piece of property in this area took the rooster and integrated him with their flock.  Unfortunately, shortly thereafter this second family had to get rid of all their chickens, so they called us asking if we would be willing to give the rooster a "forever" home.  We were glad to do so, and he's been with us going on two or three years now.

Aaaanyway, as we were all standing out in the poultry yard admiring how good Shivers, the rooster, still looks at the ripe old age of eight years, we all noticed little bugs circling our heads.  Huh, where did they come from?

They were apparently the scouts checking out the territory for the season's first batch of biting insects getting ready to make their presence known.

I can now confidently declare the bug season has begun.  

You see, Papa Pea volunteers to do dishes for me on weekends (yes, he is a dear) so when he attacked the huge pile of them (he prefers to let them stack up all day . . . ugh) after dinner tonight, I went back out into the garden to finish weeding the asparagus.  

If there is a biting insect within a hundred miles of me, I get chewed upon.  I think these tonight must have been those dastardly no-see-'ums because before I knew it, I had two bites on my left forearm, three on my right forearm and one in a very bad spot down the front of my shirt.

After the last bite, I had to quit with only about two feet of weeding left to do and ran into the house as fast as my short little legs would take me.

Now I'm slathered with calamine lotion but can hardly wait to get into the shower hoping that will make the itching abate a bit.

(No, I'm not going to show the last bite about which I spoke.)

Papa Pea has been suggesting recently that I don't push myself quite as much as I have been getting the garden all planted, but I've been telling him I have to keep working away because when bug season starts, I simply can't stand to be out there while they're in a feeding frenzy.  I may be getting certain periods (during said bug feeding frenzies) now when I will not be outside.


coffeeontheporchwithme said...

Amen to that, sister!!! It's ridiculous. I had a shower this morning, only to then coat myself with sunscreen and bug spray. Then I got coated with dirt, so showered the whole thing off again. I found taking Benadryl as a pill (or the generic form of it - less expensive) was the only thing that helped take the itch away. -Jenn

M.E. Masterson said...

I HATE bug season!! I have been known to lose all composure during bug season. Lathering myself in bug spray is usually how it goes.
apple cider Vinegar/splazh of water taken daily will also detour the bugs from biting. It takes about couple days for it to work. Lezz bites not completely but every little bit helps!!

Sparkless said...

Because we live in a small town we don't have that many biting bugs like mosquitoes. I'm like you though if there is even one mosquito out there she will find me and get me. And the worst part isn't the itching, which is pretty bad, but I swell up horrible. If I get more than one bite in the same location I have to ice the bites and even take Benadryl if the swelling is really bad. The nasty things will even bite through my clothing to get to me! I hate mosquitoes with a red simmering passion!

Vera said...

Lots of biting insects here too because of the wet weather we have been having for the last six months, although I have not had any itchy bites yet. This might be because we have been regularly bitten for the last few weeks so we have become immune to the itchiness, or the nasty biters are not out and about yet. Dabbing the bites with apple cider vinegar soon stops the itching though, and then after that we become immune to the effects of the bites.

However, apparently we have a new type of mosquito in our area, which is bigger than the other types. Apparently it has a nasty bite. We await the arrival of that mozzie with interest!

Myrna said...

Many years ago, my Doctor suggested dissolving a aspirin in rubbing alcohol and rubbing on bite to help with the itching and swelling. Does help and is easy to do.

wisps of words said...

You and me! If there is a bug, within 30 miles, it will come to me! They must really, really like our blood! -sighhhh-

No-see-'ums!!! Yes! I will start batting and my husband will say, that he doesn't see any bugs. Hahhhhhhhhh... Now I will tell him, they are "No-see-'ums" and they ARE there.

'Course they do not like him, as much as they like me!!!!

You don't use stuff like "Deep Woods Off"?

Do you have ticks? If so, you really should use Deet or "Deep Woods Off".

If you have mice and deer, you have ticks.

Michelle said...

The bugs were the worst part of MN when we lived there!

MrsDuncanMahogany said...

Hallo Mama Pea! Our bug season is slow to start with mosquitoes but I would gladly share with you the hundreds of woodticks that we have. Living in the bush means lots of bugs - some you know, some you don't. We are learning that quite quickly. Actually we are learning alot of things quickly out in the country! :)

I too prefer to not be out when its bug season, much like the May and September part of gardening the most. We are due some rain the next couple of days - that should bring out the mosquitoes by the dozens. Ugh.

Mama Pea said...

Jenn - We hit 85+ degrees today and although that's not HOT for some of you readers, it's too warm for us. The days of two showers are upon us! No bugs until about 4 o'clock this afternoon at which point I decided I'd had enough garden work. Sometimes (hard as it is) I just have to be sensible. :o/

M.E.Masterson - I've never tried the apple cider vinegar/water, but you can be sure I will! We take a tablespoon of vinegar in water three times a week, but the internal application obviously isn't helping!

Sparkless - Yes! People always tell me I just have to cover up so I won't get bit. But, like you, the dang bugs bite me right through clothing! Is it because we're so sweet? (Nah, I didn't think so.) ;o)

Vera - I've tried all kinds of "stop the itch" ointments, creams and potions. Now I'll give good ol' apple cider vinegar a try as my bites do tend to itch and itch and itch. And itch some more! Be careful with those new mosquitoes coming to get you!!

Myrna - Now there's yet another one I haven't tried. Keep the remedies comin', dear folks!

wisps of words - We try hard to stay away from any of the repellents that contain possibly harmful ingredients. (Gotta remember anything you put on your skin is absorbed just as if you ate it. :o( ) Yes, we do have ticks and have really researched it out and found a repellent containing only natural ingredients that we use whenever we're going to be in brush or tall grass or the woods. It's a pain, but so is having a tick embedded in your skin or (worst of the worst) getting Lyme Disease!

Michelle - We're just NEVER going to coax you into moving back to Minnesota, are we? ;o)

MrsDM - Ah yes, all areas have their particular bugs, reptiles, and creepy-crawlies! Usually we're assaulted with mosquitoes first and then the black flies and then the no-see-'ums but those were definitely no-see-'ums getting me yesterday! The ticks are so back around here these days that, frankly, it's one of the things keeping us from getting another dog. People say they have to check their dogs when they come in every single time . . . and are finding several ticks on them. ((Shudder))

Lisa said...

Boy can I relate too!!!!! The biggies for me are yellow jackets, wasps and hornets and for years we've been told they have been extra aggressive 'looking for water' because we've been in a drought..... but this year we've had excessive rain and they are extra terrible! I've already been stung on my lip by simply walking to my car parked in a parking lot that put me out of commission for a couple of days. I don't know what the answer is but it certainly makes it hard to be outside. Hope you are feeling better from the 'attacks'!! :)
P.S. We have 3 lingering lovely ladies who are going on 9 years old this year. And we actually get an odd egg every now and then.

Susan said...

Oh, good gawd, can I relate! I've got bites from top to bottom! I try to go out with my bug netting on, but it gets in the way and I always get frustrated and try to work around it - those black flies are the worst; they can get in the tiniest cracks and crannies. I am hoping that the bug season is as short as spring was this year. One can hope...

Katie C. said...

Biting bugs, ugh! I spray my gardening hat with a det product to keep them out of my face and neck but I have to directly spray my legs and arms. Even with all that, I get bitten.

My arugula is already trying to bolt! Other lettuces, kale and chard are chugging along and my green beans have started to climb, yay! I got a pressure canner for Christmas. I really want to try canning those beans. We still need to clear more weeds to get the second half of the tomato plants in the ground. Now if the weather would just cooperate ...

Rain said...

Eeegad, I HATE bug season too...for us the black flies have come out and they are despicable kamikazes....I'm VERY lucky they don't like the taste of me, but Alex is fair game to them. I don't leave the porch without my head net these days or I'd be blinded and deafened by swarms trying to insert themselves into my ears and eye balls...and my paranoid self says they are trying to lay eggs inside me too lol :)

Very sweet story about the rooster, I'm glad you gave him a forever home! :)