What kind of bugs

Old Nov 12th, 2005, 05:31 AM
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What kind of bugs

My husband and I just spent 3 wonderful days at the Cheeca Lodge in Islamorada. We are now in Fort Lauderdale visiting family. However when we returned to Fort Lauderdale we had bites all over our body and never saw a mosquito. Does anyone know what kind of bites it could be and if there is a particular bug that is in the keys this time ofyear. We don't think it is bed bugs. The hotel was very clean.
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Old Nov 12th, 2005, 05:52 AM
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A classic case of no see'ums, most likely. You won't see them but they are eating and chewing on you. I once camped with my husband and son in the Keys. They both slept soundly while I was scratching and twisting all night long. They LOVE me. Apparently you too are candy to the bugs (my husband and son did not get a single bite).

First aid: dampen a washrag, throw it in the microwave for 15-30 seconds (it will be VERY HOT), then place on your bites to draw out the histamines.
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Old Nov 12th, 2005, 05:53 AM
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Ah, Linda, a trip to Florida often stirs a lifelong interest in Entomolgy. ;-)

I'm guessing you've probably made the acquaintance of noseeums. They are very small biting insects that, as the name implies, are very difficult to see. They're pretty much around all year. Bug repellant usually does the trick, though I have friends who swear by Skin So Soft.

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Old Nov 12th, 2005, 05:56 AM
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The scoop on no see'ums:

http://www.griffin.peachnet.edu/ga/c...s/noseeums.htm
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Old Nov 12th, 2005, 06:12 AM
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Noseeums hurt when they bite you though! In fact, here's a quote fromt he articel referenced here:

"You may not see them, but you will notice their hot, painful, stinging bite."

I wouldn't rule out bed bugs - they ccan turn up even in 4 star NYC hotels. Here is a quote off a web site about them:

"Engorgement takes about three to 10 minutes, yet the person seldom knows they are being bitten. Symptoms thereafter vary with the individual. Some people develop an itchy welt or localized swelling, while others have little or no reaction. Unlike fleabites that occur mainly around the ankles, bed bugs feed on any bare skin exposed while sleeping (face, neck, shoulders, arms, hands, etc.)."

What about fleas? Is that a possibility? Also, spiders are a possibility.
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Old Nov 12th, 2005, 06:21 AM
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I lived in Florida for a long time and I can't believe you were bitten by no see'ums. You no see 'um but you sure do feel 'um!! My guess is bed bugs, especially if they are all over your body.
 
Old Nov 12th, 2005, 06:38 AM
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It could also be chiggers, although I don't remember encountering any in the Keys before. Did you get out and hike around at all?

Funny story I learned on a carriage tour of Savannah. Ford used the Spanish moss from the live oaks to stuff the upholstery of the Model T's. One batch went out without being boiled first to kill the chiggers. Folks were eaten up by chiggers in the cushions.

It was the first recall case in industry. The cars were sent back to be "debugged".
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Old Nov 12th, 2005, 06:42 AM
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My mom got eaten by chiggers on her first Carribean cruise. They got her on the beach and evidently live in the sand, among other places. She got a very ichy red rash slightly swollen which took a few days to develop.

All the bugs love me, which is one of the reasons FL is not on my list.
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Old Nov 12th, 2005, 06:47 AM
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Chiggers are common in my neck of the woods but didn't know they liked the sand too.

Putting nail polish on the bites really help. The old wives tale was that it smothered the chiggers, but the real reason is that it cuts off the oxygen supply to the poison in the bites and thus stops the itching.

OO tried it after her first encounter with chiggers in TX and was lovely with fuschia polka dots all over her legs. Clear polish is an alterntive too

My dad used to drink a shot of vinegar everytime he headed out to pick blackberries (chigger heaven). Evidently, he was far less tasty to chiggers then.
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Old Nov 12th, 2005, 07:14 AM
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Could be sea lice, which are actually the larvae of jellyfish. Did you swim through the water and have a stinging sensation but there was nothing biting you? They don't become bothersome for at least 24 hrs. sometimes longer. You didn't say if the bites were itchy or if they hurt or what. For relief from sea lice you will need oral antihistamines and can take comfort in a chlorine pool.

I don't think chiggers are found at a sand beach although they are found along rivers in the woods but not many in Florida. I encountered some in Alabama once --- grrrr.
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Old Nov 12th, 2005, 07:31 AM
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I am fairly certain they were noseeums...I too have been a victim..in Sanibel Island, Costa Rica and Jupiter Florida..I must be allergic, because the bites last a long time. My husband said I scratched all night and I was bleeding in my sleep. They are out at dusk and will cause much discomfort to say the least!
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Old Nov 12th, 2005, 07:36 AM
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First guess, noseeums. Second guess, fleas or bedbugs. One thing about bites from fleas or bedbugs is that not everyone reacts to the bite the same way. I once slept on a sofa bed in a rental house (rented by my parents) and woke up covered with red itchy welts. I was confused since others had slept on same bed without problem.

Finally saw a doctor who said that fleas bite every warm-blooded animal/person - some never notice, others have more intesne reactions. Do not know if same is true with bedbugs - but both are so small that you could easily have missed seeing the bug itself.
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Old Nov 12th, 2005, 08:40 AM
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On my first trip to the Bahamas, I ended up with red bites all over after a day at the beach. Apparently there are sand fleas in the sand.
I put calamine lotion on them to stop the itch and took benadryl antihistamine.
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Old Nov 12th, 2005, 08:48 AM
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I see and hear noseeums. They love to bite me. I had an experience with bedbugs many, many years ago in Greece. It sounds as if that is what bit you.
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Old Nov 13th, 2005, 06:25 AM
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Thanks for all of your responses. We are away from the keys for 2 days now and in fort Lauderdale. We are still scratching. I think they are noseeums as they are mainly around our legs. Our bungalow at the Cheeca was on the sand and we were in our beach chairs and walking in the sand at dusk. I did have a bad experience with these beforee in Sanibel in the summer. I thought that noseeums were only out in the summer and not in the fall. I guess I was wrong. Ig we knew we would have sprayed.
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Old Nov 14th, 2005, 03:54 AM
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Just thought of another bug - when we were on Sanibel in the late winter a few years ago I stepped on a red ant hill and those little suckers climbed halfway up my leg, biting all the way. But I think you would have noticed these.
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Old Nov 14th, 2005, 05:26 AM
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My vote goes to chiggers, not noseeums, aka, flying teeth, which you feel as they are biting. I never have had visible bite marks after noseeum attacks, but they sure make you crazy and very much aware of them as they bite. You know it's happening.

Chiggers, as small or smaller than a noseeum, on the other hand, you never feel as they bite and you don't see the bites (which do look like mosquito bites) until a day or so after you've been exposed to them. They love underbrush, not even thick underbrush, in our area. They also love, love, love Spanish Moss, as Starrsville said. If you got near that, it's a likely culprit. For whatever reason, chiggers don't seem to bite my lower legs or arms, but I have (current from yard work last week) bites on my upper thighs and torso, front and back. Yuck. Some of the welts are as large as a 50 cent piece and itch intensely for about 3 or 4 days, occasionally forming a small blister.

Only problem with this theory is...I never experienced chiggers when I lived in FL...but then, I didn't often walk around where there was underbrush either and steered well clear of Spanish moss. Like TG's family, my husband and daughter seem to be immune to them, while my son and I get big ugly welts, all of us in the same area at the same time.

Fleas...don't you feel them when they bite too?

Bedbugs. You can't rule them out, even if you'd been in a 5* hotel. It can happen--doesn't have to do with the cleanliness of the hotel either. Evidently there has been an upsurge in the US recently.

So...LOL...what do your bites look like? Flat? Raised? Size? Location? That might help in the DX.
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Old Dec 7th, 2005, 01:41 PM
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I went to Peru this past summer. Returned in early July. Three days after returning home I noticed very hot pink red bites on my calves and some on my elbows. 1cm to 2cm in diameter. They were not itchy at first but a week later they became extremely itchy. The odd thing is its now December and they are itchier than ever and I feel as if they are spreading from my calves up to my thighs and lower back. Although they can not be seem, I can't stop itching my thighs and back. Put on some vitamin E cream so far which stops the itch for a while however I'm wondering if anyone would know what kind of bug bite this could possibly be?
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Old Dec 7th, 2005, 01:54 PM
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gem, you might want to look up "scabies".
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Old Dec 7th, 2005, 02:18 PM
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Dear GemT,
Don't want to alarm you, but you may want to get this checked out as it could be some type of parasite rather than a harmless bug bite of sorts. One can never tell when traveling what you may encounter or how your immune system may react to foreign organisms. My advise to anyone who asks me if they should seek medical attention, is if your concerned enough to ask me you should go get it checked out to ease your mind.
Cheers;
Sherry
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