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17 July 2005

Got Bug Spray?...


W

hether you enjoy backyard barbecues or backpacking, cycling or just sitting by the pool, summer means it's time to get outside. But nothing spoils the fun faster than one very tiny creature: the mosquito. Not only are mosquitoes a nuisance, leaving people peppered with itchy red welts and driving them indoors, but they can also carry diseases that pose a threat to your family's health.

While all mosquitoes feed on nectar and other sugary sources, most female mosquitoes also require blood meals, and some will fly for miles to find it.

Most biting mosquitoes prefer horses, cattle, birds or small animals, but humans, unfortunately, are also on the menu. Mosquitoes use carbon dioxide, moisture, color, and movement to help locate their prey. The U.S. Department of Agriculture is studying hundreds of naturally occurring chemical compounds on human skin to try to isolate which ones appeal to mosquitoes.

Many mosquitoes are especially active at dusk and dawn, with some species biting through the night. Some kinds of mosquitoes bite during the day, too, especially on cloudy days and in shady areas, which are moist and sheltered from wind.

Observations and Questions
Do these pesky air-borne picnic-ruiners bother you? Do you have a favorite spray? How do you fight these guys?

Today's Birthday or Permanent Departure Day

Died on this date in 1959, Billie Holiday blues singer, dies of liver failure at 44 in NYC.

Gentle Reminder of the Day

So excited... I got to hang another photo over in the Gallery! Welcome TV anchor Michael Manning! Come on gang... get your picture to me if you want it displayed for the world to see.

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