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Biting flies at the beach?

Posted: Wed Oct 22, 2014 1:51 pm
by BeachLoverInNM
We have been here a few days and just today noticed biting flies which are making it next to impossible to sit on the beach. Just wondering where did they come from? Why are they worse at some times than at others? Is there anything that repels them effectively? Or someplace that is better (like the national seashore)? Thanks!!

Re: Biting flies at the beach?

Posted: Wed Oct 22, 2014 4:13 pm
by redchaz57
Well! Those biting flies are horrible and the last time experienced them was a precursor to tropical storm in the gulf.

We did find and bring every time extra long citronella sticks that you burned like incense. They helped a lot and am sure wouldn't hurt at the beach. As long as you removed the stick when finished. The are about 2 1/2 feet tall. Stick them right in sand and if windy brace them. We also place them in a clay pot full of sand.

Another trick we learned for the deck or outside sitting space was to pour a large capful of cheap tequila. Every morning you had a capful of very drunk and dead black bugs. We would replace the caps through out the day. My initial reasoning is you can rid your flower beds of slugs with beer why not tequila at the beach. :shock:

What not to do!!! Don't chase them around with pepper spray. Ends rather badly for you. :oops:

Good luck! Sure a local hardware store can help. I think they call them "no-see me" bugs.

Re: Biting flies at the beach?

Posted: Wed Oct 22, 2014 4:14 pm
by redchaz57
on the incense sticks sure that Kenny or Pensacola kid will know for sure if ok to use at the beach.

Re: Biting flies at the beach?

Posted: Wed Oct 22, 2014 4:18 pm
by Linda
Oh you definitely see the biting flies and feel them. They Hurt! They are also called dog flies. I heard someone say they are more prevalent this time of year due to the agriculture north of us being harvested. No clue if that is true.

No see 'ums are probably sand fleas.

Re: Biting flies at the beach?

Posted: Wed Oct 22, 2014 4:38 pm
by redchaz57
see if these will help! they are natural repellent recipes. there's a health food store in downtown Pensacola not far from joe patti's.

Essential Oils
Common houseflies taste through their feet and are drawn to decay and foul smells, including perspiration. Flies do not like sweet smells, which is why you will not often find flies on your flowers and herbs. Essential oils made from fragrant flowers, herbs and plants can be used alone to repel flies. A few drops of essential oils like lavender, peppermint, tansy or eucalyptus, dabbed behind ears or rubbed on arms and legs, can keep flies away from your kids for hours. Washing with strong-scented soaps that include essential oils will also help.
Recipe #1
Mix together:
1 cup water
2 cups vinegar (might not use this on the beach)
1 cup Avon Skin So Soft Bath Oil
1 tbs. eucalyptus oil
Pour this mixture into a spray bottle to spray on your kids' exposed arms and legs. Always shake the mixture well before spraying.
This homemade fly/bug repellent is recommended by the U.S. Forest Service.

Recipe #2
Combine:
10-25 drops essential oil (use lavender, peppermint, eucalyptus and citronella)
2 tbs. vegetable oil
1 tbs. aloe vera gel (optional)
Stir together until all the ingredients are thoroughly mixed. Store in a lidded jar. Dab the mix behind the ears, under the chin, on elbows, wrists, knees and ankles. This mix can also be dabbed on clothing without staining.
A simpler recipe for dabbing on clothes and skin is:
25 drops essential oil combined with 1/4 cup water or organic apple cider vinegar
Shake to mix, store in a lidded jar.
in away is a health food store. make a trip to joe patti's and there as well.

Re: Biting flies at the beach?

Posted: Wed Oct 22, 2014 5:12 pm
by Kenny Wilder
When fall comes to our area, those refreshing weather fronts will move through from the north bringing lower humidity, lower temperatures and the infamous dog fly. The stable fly (Stomoxys calcitrans), known as the dog fly in Northwest Florida, is a blood feeding fly that is a nuisance to man, pets, and livestock.

From August through November the dog fly congregates on the Florida Panhandle beaches. This fly originates from farming areas in southern Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia and northern Florida wetlands and rides the northerly winds associated with cold fronts that move through our area.

About 70% of the land between Navarre and Interstate 10 are Wetlands. Black Flies also breed there during the summer and warm fall months. Over the past 2 weeks we have had strong winds from the north and northeast, which is conducive to blowing the black flies towards the Navarre Mainland and Navarre Beach. In the past few days we have experienced very light winds, which encourages the black flies to hang around.

Once we have a day or two of strong winds from either the southeast, south or southwest that should remedy the situation. With cooler weather heading our way within the next week or so the black flies should become nonexistent until next summer.

Just my understanding as being certified as a Florida Master Naturalist for beaches, bays and wetlands.

Re: Biting flies at the beach?

Posted: Wed Oct 22, 2014 5:53 pm
by David
Kenny nailed it,damned neusance,but.if you noticed the wind was strong out of the north today and my planned beach fishing was delayed. The reservation to the north is full.of wetlands and a strong north wind will always bring the flies this time of year.

Re: Biting flies at the beach?

Posted: Thu Oct 23, 2014 7:18 am
by PensacolaKid
Not sure about burning anything on the beach. More than likely not allowed, but then again, an insect repellant is not a Bon fire. A citronella candle or coil is probably not a big deal.

Re: Biting flies at the beach?

Posted: Thu Oct 23, 2014 8:19 am
by BeachLoverInNM
Thank you so much for all the information. I guess it's always something: algae, jellyfish, hurricanes or flies. Navarre is still my favorite place on earth. The beautiful water and empty beaches this week compensate for the flies (which are not a problem when walking, only sitting). Thanks again for all the helpful replies.

Re: Biting flies at the beach?

Posted: Fri Oct 24, 2014 9:40 am
by Sandstomper
Can anyone give me a fly report? I'm going to be there next week and I hope they've hit the road. Thanks!

Re: Biting flies at the beach?

Posted: Fri Oct 24, 2014 1:18 pm
by RastaNavarrian
I'm on my way there now. I'll post a flea report Sunday night!

Re: Biting flies at the beach?

Posted: Fri Oct 24, 2014 5:17 pm
by florida dreamer
Dang flies were there in September when I was there. Their bite hurts like crap too. There used to be something to get to put on to keep them from biting but can't think what it was. That was about twelve years ago.

Re: Biting flies at the beach?

Posted: Sat Oct 25, 2014 8:15 am
by BeachLoverInNM
Day before yesterday the wind had shifted (the beach flags pointed inland) and there were absolutely NO flies at the beach. Not one. It was awesome. Then yesterday the flags pointed out to sea again and the flies were back. The helpful clerk at Tom Thumb directed us to the Deep Woods Off spray and told us it was the only thing that would keep them away. She was right. They did fly around us and would land occasionally but in general did not bite (unless they could find a bit of flesh you had not coated properly with Off).

We also tried suggestions we found on the internet (white vinegar and sitting close to the water) but they did not help. Oddly enough, on our walk yesterday we stopped several places to sit and noticed NO flies in the public beach area by the pier and in one other place. Weird. Was it just coincidence? Do the life guards have a secret weapon?

We also noticed that certain people around us did not seem to be bothered. Does it help if you smoke cigarettes and drink beer? Eat garlic?

Re: Biting flies at the beach?

Posted: Sat Oct 25, 2014 10:11 am
by rexy
Good advice about the flies, what can be about dog owners walking there dog on beach like right now 10.10 am.

Re: Biting flies at the beach?

Posted: Sun Oct 26, 2014 11:01 am
by Pete
rexy wrote:Good advice about the flies, what can be about dog owners walking there dog on beach like right now 10.10 am.
Don't know if calling a Sheriff Deputy would help - they may, (or may not) enforce the ordinance. If not, I'd complain to the county commissioners?