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2550-02-21

MOSQUITOES IN THAILAND

I sometimes feel that I'm the primary target for the local mosquitoes to aim for.  It often seems as if they have special radar that tells them they should bite the farang as none of the Thai people around me ever have a problem with them.  My wife says it's because my blood is sweet but I think it's just payback from living the previous twelve years without having them around (Albuquerque was relatively mosquito-free because of it's altitude and the dry desert air).  I've only found one spray that works against them but this is only available in America (my sister sent me several bottles last fall).  I've been particularly worried about bites ever since my friend Ben was hospitalized a few months ago and they didn't know if he had dengue fever or malaria (it turned out that it was neither, but they never did actually figure out what he did have).

And, yet, I don't think I've ever written an entire blog about the pesky little biters.  Vern over at Thai Pulse beat me to that.  I really can't improve on what he's written (and I can relate to many of his observations) so I present his entry here:

Thailand Mosquito Bait: You

I am a 71 kg piece of mosquito bait.

The mosquitos in Thailand are OFF THE HOOK down here in Surat Thani.  I'm not sure how they're getting in the house, except that by now they must be breeding under the couch and in that dark room that we never have the light on.

Living in the northeast (Isaan) we experienced some level of mosquitos that I thought was HIGH.  I lived in Florida for a number of years and we have mosquitos, but they are BIG.  We can see them.  We can control them for the most part because they are so big and easily seen.

Here in Thailand we have the citronella coils that we light — but they don't work here.  In Florida they work pretty well.  We have torches in Florida too — that work well.

We have mosquito lotion that we rub in and the mosquitos don't bite us... here they bite me THROUGH my shirt if there is lotion on my arm.

Are their suck-tubes that long that they can go through my shirt AND pierce my skin through the 3rd layer to reach blood?

That's amazing, because they are so small!

In Florida you FEEL the mosquito as it's biting sometimes.  Here — never.  In Thailand I only feel the after-effect, the insane itchiness that doesn't last all that long but that drives me farking insane for a few minutes especially when they get me on the tops of the feet or between the toes.

There are some mother-mutant mosquitos around the house here too.  I've caught a couple on video.

These are like UFO mother-ships that spit out hordes of babies every few hours.  I kill those immediately sparing no effort.
The greatest tool we have in Thailand for controlling the population of mosquitos indoors are these mosquito racquets.  These have an electrified wire grid that is great fun to use — and I never tire of the rush of hearing (and smelling) a mosquito sizzling on it.

The mother-mutants are not easily killed with these racquets though.  Two days ago I zapped one in the outside restroom.  I got it about 3 times leaving it for dead.

My girlfriend told me that night that she found it — laying on the floor in the restroom still alive and she tried to nurse it back to health!

WHAT IS SHE THINKING?

I asked her, "Weren't you just bitten over 70 times by mosquitos when you stayed in Bangkok at your friend's apartment?"

"Yes" she replied.

*E#*)#()$*%! I said...

"But Buddhism says we shouldn't kill something."

Mai pen rai, krup I mumbled...

With large bugs she has a problem with killing them, or me killing them even... but with small mosquitos, no problem!

The notecard above shows the times of day that you're likely to get bitten by a mosquito in Thailand.

If you are walking in the woods outside though, you will get bitten anytime of day or night.  They love the cool shade, and this is where I was bitten yesterday as I walked around Suan Mokkh Temple in Chaiya.

I had a couple bites on my head where I didn't apply the lotion so thick, and the rest on my back where they bit through my shirt!

:( Cover up and lather up with the repellant. I've had one friend get Dengue fever here and seen another kid or two at school get it.  (They're never really sure if it's dengue for some reason).


Posted by Vern at 2/19/2007 11:21:00 AM
I've never seen the "mutant mother-ships" Vern describes but I pray we never have one of these in our home.  And, I've seen the electric mosquito swatters in Big C but I just thought they were for some odd Thai version of bandmiton or something...

1 ความคิดเห็น:

Vern กล่าวว่า...

hi mark,

I saw your mosquito post and thought I'd check out your blogs. Nice stuff! Welcome to Thailand... I've been here just over 2 years now and staying as long as they let me I guess. I'm also teaching - north of you in Surat right now, looking to move either back up to Isaan where I was before, or possibly down Phuket way. I stayed in Phuket for a few months - great place.

What did you do in the states?

Ok - just saying hey... Vern (Thaipulse)