By Josie February 7th, 2023
No-see-ums, also known as biting midges or punkies, are tiny insects with piercing mouths.
Due to their small size of 0,4 - 0,12 inches in length, they may be difficult to detect.
They bite humans and animals, creating a painful itching sensation lasting up to a week.
They are cylindrical and composed of primarily carbon-based materials, giving them a unique shimmering effect when light bounces off them.
These tiny creatures come in various sizes and colors, ranging from vibrant blues and greens to light browns and whites.
Stage 1: Egg Eggs are laid in damp soil, standing water, or vegetation, hatching within a few days.
Stage 2: Larva During this stage, the larvae feed on microorganisms and organic matter in the soil or water.
Stage 3: Pupa Pupae do not feed and instead undergo metamorphosis, developing into adults.
Stage 4: Adult They feed on nectar, pollen, or blood and can live for a few days to a few weeks.
They thrive in wetland environments like marshes and streams and hot and humid areas close to water.
Typically they live in damp soil, organic debris like fallen leaves, or even potting soil.
Additionally, they can spread diseases such as the West Nile virus, Encephalitis viruses, and many more potentially fatal illnesses.
Their bites are annoying and itchy and can cause inflammation, swelling, and allergic reactions that may require medical attention.
- Placing screens on windows and doors
- Removing outdoor areas of standing water sources
- Applying bug repellents around outdoor seating areas
- Trimming vegetation allows for airflow and light penetration, reducing their breeding grounds.
Essential oils such as lavender or neem oil have been known to be effective deterrents.
Herbs like lemon balm and catnip can also provide relief and likewise contain compounds that may act as repellents.
Now you're equipped to fend of these unwelcome creatures during your next hike or camping trip!