A Buzz in the Night

It’s been great to finally see some sunshine and to feel that eventually yes summer is coming! But with the good weather in the Netherlands come some rather annoying little night- time friends. This is especially true if you live anywhere near stagnant water. Since this can mean anything from being near a park, canal or forgotten flower- pot that’s pretty much anywhere in Amsterdam. And don’t expect to escape just because you live high up. These resourceful blighters can fly. They even had them breeding for a while in the water reservoirs on the roof garden at the Marineterrein. And yep you got it I’m talking about mosquitoes. And most specifically the ones that wake you up buzzing hungrily round your head at 4am when all you want is to get back to sleep. Here’s my suggestions on how to deter your hungry new friends.

Mosquito Net
Many people do of course invest in that trusty device the mosquito net. For me this isn’t an option – think overly active cats plus net. But even when staying in hotels where they have a net I’ve often managed to get bitten. So for now I’m assuming that you either share your home with other friendlier creatures or simply don’t have the type of furniture where a net could easily be set up.

Trying to swat them
Sorry but at 4am this is never going to work. I hardly manage to catch them when I’m fully awake though do recommend a magazine brings higher success rate than the specifically designed fly- swatter. There’s a theory that if you turn your phone or torch on in the dark they will be attracted by the light making them easier to catch. It doesn’t work. They’re just hanging out on the ceiling waiting for you to turn the light off.

Sleeping with your head covered
I have to admit this is my usual solution, either lying completely covered by my duvet or under a random t-shirt. This can be quite effective. At least until your fingers or feet escape and you end up bitten there instead. Plus you usually hear the damn thing flying around until it finds something to bite. The silence when you know one has found a way in is worse than the buzzing.

Pre-plan and turn on your fan
If you’ve planned ahead this is really the most effective solution I know. The bugs don’t like the moving air and stay away so long as it is circulating. According to the internet this is mainly because they are not very strong at flying. Although studies also suggested that because you are cooler and not sweaty this makes less attractive to them, plus the moving air circulates the carbon dioxide you breathed out which is one of the ways they found you to begin with.

So good luck not getting bitten in these early summer months. And my advice – invest in that fan!

Keep the bugs away from me!

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