[LEPS-L:7864] Mosquito compatible

Ron Gatrelle gatrelle at tils-ttr.org
Tue Nov 14 12:38:08 EST 2000

    When I first moved to the South (from San Diego to Pensacola) the
humidity, mildew, roaches, and mosquitoes all in mass were new to me. Thirty
two years later and still in Allergy Country (Charleston, SC), I learned how
to stop the mildew, contain the roaches, and get used to the humidity and
the mosquitoes.
    Here, as in Florida, people love to build fancy homes on swamps and
marshes to be near the ocean, lake, or river. They then spend the rest of
their lives fighting their neighbors -- mosquitoes.
    I used to load myself up with mosquito repellent when I went into the
field (which was often in or near a swamp as I am a big skipper fan).
However, some spot was always uncovered so I immediately got bit. After just
an hour all repellent had been washed away by profuse sweating in 90 degree
heat and 98% humidity. Then I spent all my time swatting not collecting. I
finally just gave up. Now, I may put on a little Skin So Soft or nothing. I
always wear long pants and a hat. But usually a short sleeved shirt.
    This September while researching Pterourus troilus fakahatcheensis in
the southwest tip of Florida, a local guy I encountered was amazed at the
swarm of mosquitoes I had attracted. I told him I was used to it. Yes, I
still do some rubbing and swatting, but I also do some swelling --
especially on my elbows. I don't swell as much as I used to and I virtually
never have to scratch. So my theory is that I am building up an immunity.
Now, unlike my wife, I have never had BIG reactions to mosquito bites and
fire ant stings (I barely react to poison Ivy). If the manufacturers of bug
zapppers and  mosquito repellent had to rely on people like me for business,
they would have none.


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