Gnats Biting Me?

blueheron(z6 PA)July 22, 2013

I live in a retirement community and I have a garden around my house. Unfortunately, whenever I go outside to garden, I get bitten by some kind of gnat or mosquito. I can't see them, I just start itching right away and I know I've been bitten.

I spoke to the grounds guy and he has no idea why we have so many biting insects around here. He wears long trousers all the time and isn't bothered and he keeps suggesting things I can do, instead of finding out why they are here and how they can get be gotten rid of.

I was visiting my daughter's garden today and there were NO biting insects and I walked all around the garden with no problem and she lives about a mile from me. There has to be a reason why we have the problem here and nowhere else.

We do have a low-lying area around a tree that floods when it rains heavily, but it drains as soon as the rain stops. I didn't know if that was enough time for bugs to breed?

Any suggestions?

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ronalawn82(z9FL)

blueheron, try here.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2013 at 7:16PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

There are sooo many biting critters out there! Ron, I used to live in an area where sand gnats were a torture. I'm thinking that blueheron might be plagued by what we called no see 'ums.....nearly invisible to the naked eye, but do they ever bite. They're a type of midge.

There are also biting thrips but most people are aware of them flitting around their heads.

Do you have a wetland, pond, marshy area, or poorly drained swale near you? The biting midges have a semi-aquatic life cycle.

When these or other insects like them are bothersome, I'm afraid that it's up to each of us to find the personal protection that works best for us. One can't spray the environment to get rid of these things.

There are lots of good insect repellents on the market.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2013 at 10:26PM
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blueheron(z6 PA)

I think they are no-see-ums. There are poorly drained areas around here. Maybe that is the problem.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2013 at 4:57PM
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morz8(Washington Coast Z8b)

We have no see 'ums here too, and I've always wondered if not more than one 'biter', or more than one population explosion per season. :) Sometimes they are an issue, other weeks not at all. But the problem mostly will happen if its going to in evening, when I'm trying to get that last bit of work done before I quit for the day, and they get into my hair, bite my head. Very painful, although it is immediate discomfort and no lasting effects, no swelling or residual itching, redness or anything like that.

I really don't know what they are called, other than darned bug ;) This house is on a hill, no water features, although there is a year round small creek that runs steeply down a ravine across the street.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2013 at 5:39PM
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