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-   -   Calling on the accumulation of wisdom in battling bugs... (http://www.bikeforums.net/fifty-plus-50/945028-calling-accumulation-wisdom-battling-bugs.html)

David Bierbaum 04-26-14 10:02 AM

Calling on the accumulation of wisdom in battling bugs...
 
Now that Spring has finally sprung with a "sproing!" sound, I find it is once again the season to battle against the insect hordes.

I am currently trying a nifty trick I just picked up on the interwebs to repel wasps from building nests near the entrances to the house, using brown paper bags stuffed with paper and crumpled into the shape of a wasp's nest, and hanging them in the areas that you want to repel wasps from. To keep wasps from food when outdoors, slice cucumbers and place the slices around the area where the food is. I've also come across a youtube video propounding upon the idea of making up a mixture of water, detergent, and peppermint oil, to use against wasps and repel them.

For ants, there is the old remedy of baited traps using sugar or honey mixed with borax or boric acid.

What pest control measures do you folks use (outside of cans of raid for bugs and poison peanuts for moles) that seem to work for you? The fake wasp nests SEEM to be working for me, but it might be a case of "shark repellent in Kansas" effect...

fietsbob 04-26-14 10:10 AM

Since this site is about bikes and not houses,


How about a head net? over you helmet and all, at least they wont be in your face..



Being breezy every afternoon, Mozzies are not an issue, other than in the trees at lakeside.

David Bierbaum 04-26-14 11:30 AM

I object on that point! ;) Since leaving the house is an integral part of going on a bike ride, I posit that my thread does have a tangential bearing on the subject of bicycling! That's my story, and I'm sticking to it!

Also, even the most gossamer of head nets seems to restrict the flow of ventilation in my helmet, which can be bad on the hotter days. This year, however, it seems all the bugs are hitting me directly in the face...

NVanHiker 04-26-14 11:53 AM

Glad you're not killing wasps - they're actually beneficial. I remember barbequing in the back yard when my kids were young, mostly solving the problem of unwanted dinner guests and curing the kids' fear of wasps by naming this persistent one 'Gerry' and giving him his own plate with some chicken on it. They laughed watching him saw off a too-big chunk and barely get airborne with it.

Good times. Oh yeah - THEN WE GOT OUT BIKES OUT OF THE GARAGE AND WENT CYCLING. REALLY.

Retro Grouch 04-26-14 01:22 PM

Always ride with somebody who's more attractive to bugs than you are.

Glad you're planning to ride the Katy Trail Social with me by the way.

Dudelsack 04-26-14 01:28 PM

I hate to quote myself, but I really don't feel like typing this out twice:

eeewwwww!


There is something far worse than a bug gag: a bug snort.


A big big hairy black bug flew up my nostril and didn't die until it reached my frontal sinus today. Then I spent then next hour snorking out body parts. Truly disgusting.


That is all.

tpelle 04-26-14 02:29 PM

I'm not hanging a stuffed paper bag on my bike. No way. Ain't happenin'.

I just ride faster than the bugs fly, and keep my mouth closed.

JanMM 04-26-14 02:30 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dudelsack (Post 16704115)
I hate to quote myself, but I really don't feel like typing this out twice:

eeewwwww!


There is something far worse than a bug gag: a bug snort.


A big big hairy black bug flew up my nostril and didn't die until it reached my frontal sinus today. Then I spent then next hour snorking out body parts. Truly disgusting.


That is all.

Grateful for no pics.

David Bierbaum 04-26-14 03:52 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dudelsack (Post 16704115)
I hate to quote myself, but I really don't feel like typing this out twice:

eeewwwww!


There is something far worse than a bug gag: a bug snort.


A big big hairy black bug flew up my nostril and didn't die until it reached my frontal sinus today. Then I spent then next hour snorking out body parts. Truly disgusting.


That is all.

I've never been more happy for my absurdly narrow nasal passages, than after reading that. Hopefully it's the bug's body parts and not your own.

Still, it could have been worse. An enraged stinging insect would have been really bad news.

1loosemoose 04-26-14 04:18 PM

I've been working on keeping my mouth closed while riding but invariably I find myself riding along with my mouth wide open. I'm hoping I learn before I suck down a bee or wasp but if I had to make a bet on itů I'd bet I'll be eating a bug or two soon.

Maybe I should hang a brown bag under my nose and just take my chances?:lol:

BlazingPedals 04-26-14 06:02 PM

Ants - diatomaceous earth Sprinkle liberally in the grass, flower beds, cracks in the pavement, etc. Microscopically, they're shards of material and they shred the ants' exoskeletons. Note this stuff works for almost all crawling insects, including bed bugs. Bugs cannot cross the stuff without cutting themselves up. Not only is the stuff non-toxic, but you can even get it in food grade.

For any bugs that alight on surfaces - box elder bugs are the bane of my house - spray them with a dilute solution of dish washing soap. It's as effective as RAID(tm), just not as long-lasting as it has to be applied directly to the bug. Like the D.E. above, it's non-toxic to humans and pets.

Yellowjackets get really obnoxious in the fall. I make hanging traps out of 2L pop bottles. I put 2-3 inches of sugar water in the bottom and cut a couple of small round holes in the sides. Then I make little ramps for each hole. Cap it and hang it near the patio. Wasps smell the sugar, crawl in via the little ramps and can't get out. For mud-daubers, I just use commercial wasp spray. Another natural way to control wasps is to encourage insect-eating birds. Contrary to popular myth, bluebirds and purple martins don't eat a lot of mosquitos, but bees and wasps are definitely big enough to make them worth hunting!

And speaking of mosquitos, don't give them a place to breed unhindered and you won't have a problem. I have a pond, and acres of grass. The pond has frogs and fish, and they greedily eat any mosquito larva foolish enough to try living there. And I don't water the grass, which deprives them of a reliable source of moisture in the lawn.

Moles - they're not insects, but highly obnoxious. I never had luck with the various traps or bait sold at stores. Then I got a couple of mole traps from themoletrap.com . I may never get them all, but I get to do my "happy, dead mole dance" a lot more often now. (No, you don't want to see me do it.) BTW, only about 20% of a mole's diet is grubs. Their favorite meal is worms.

JanMM 04-27-14 01:54 PM

Got some kind of little bug in my mouth a week ago while riding the tandem - must say it had an interesting taste! Couldn't just spit it out because the Captain shouldn't put his Stoker at risk of being hit by flying spittle.

fietsbob 04-27-14 02:00 PM

Your team needs a spit warning protocol set up , spit right, & stoker dodges left.

Dudelsack 04-27-14 02:12 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BlazingPedals (Post 16704676)
Ants - diatomaceous earth Sprinkle liberally in the grass, flower beds, cracks in the pavement, etc. Microscopically, they're shards of material and they shred the ants' exoskeletons. Note this stuff works for almost all crawling insects, including bed bugs. Bugs cannot cross the stuff without cutting themselves up. Not only is the stuff non-toxic, but you can even get it in food grade.

For any bugs that alight on surfaces - box elder bugs are the bane of my house - spray them with a dilute solution of dish washing soap. It's as effective as RAID(tm), just not as long-lasting as it has to be applied directly to the bug. Like the D.E. above, it's non-toxic to humans and pets.

Yellowjackets get really obnoxious in the fall. I make hanging traps out of 2L pop bottles. I put 2-3 inches of sugar water in the bottom and cut a couple of small round holes in the sides. Then I make little ramps for each hole. Cap it and hang it near the patio. Wasps smell the sugar, crawl in via the little ramps and can't get out. For mud-daubers, I just use commercial wasp spray. Another natural way to control wasps is to encourage insect-eating birds. Contrary to popular myth, bluebirds and purple martins don't eat a lot of mosquitos, but bees and wasps are definitely big enough to make them worth hunting!

And speaking of mosquitos, don't give them a place to breed unhindered and you won't have a problem. I have a pond, and acres of grass. The pond has frogs and fish, and they greedily eat any mosquito larva foolish enough to try living there. And I don't water the grass, which deprives them of a reliable source of moisture in the lawn.

Moles - they're not insects, but highly obnoxious. I never had luck with the various traps or bait sold at stores. Then I got a couple of mole traps from themoletrap.com . I may never get them all, but I get to do my "happy, dead mole dance" a lot more often now. (No, you don't want to see me do it.) BTW, only about 20% of a mole's diet is grubs. Their favorite meal is worms.

How do you make a bug ramp?

Looigi 04-27-14 02:36 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BlazingPedals (Post 16704676)
Ants - diatomaceous earth Sprinkle liberally in the grass, flower beds, cracks in the pavement, etc. Microscopically, they're shards of material and they shred the ants' exoskeletons. Note this stuff works for almost all crawling insects, including bed bugs. Bugs cannot cross the stuff without cutting themselves up.....

Not exactly. It works by causing them to dry out by absorbing the oils that make their exoskeletons waterproof.

BigAura 04-27-14 02:47 PM

Any pictures of the grandkids, being attacked by bugs, while riding their bikes?

JanMM 04-27-14 06:15 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by fietsbob (Post 16706681)
Your team needs a spit warning protocol set up , spit right, & stoker dodges left.

Good idea!

martianone 04-27-14 07:34 PM

Live in a very rural area, once the snow and mud are gone- mosquitos and black flies will make the great outdoors almost intolerable. Always wear glasses while riding- they reduce chances of a bug (especially black flies) in the eye. Sitting outside in the late afternoon or eve can be less than enjoyable- all sorts of bug sprays and dope on the market, most with limited effectiveness. In that situation, most effective bug solution is to smoke a cigar, Partagas or Padron seem to work the best.

sknhgy 04-28-14 06:24 AM

I bought a pound of sulfur powder to use as a tick and chigger repellant. I'll put a small bag of it in every one of my bikes. To use I sprinkle my shoes and socks with the powder. If you've ever had a bad case of chiggers you will understand. So far this year I haven't got any ticks. I usually ride mtb trails out in the woods.

David Bierbaum 04-28-14 08:49 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sknhgy (Post 16708435)
I bought a pound of sulfur powder to use as a tick and chigger repellant. I'll put a small bag of it in every one of my bikes. To use I sprinkle my shoes and socks with the powder. If you've ever had a bad case of chiggers you will understand. So far this year I haven't got any ticks. I usually ride mtb trails out in the woods.

Sulfur as bug repellant. This sounds worth investigating. I hope one isn't left smelling of rotten eggs...

sknhgy 04-28-14 10:51 AM

yes
 
[QUOTE=David Bierbaum;16708811]Sulfur as bug repellant. This sounds worth investigating. I hope one isn't left smelling of rotten eggs...[/QUOTE
It does smell that way. I use it only on my shoes and socks. Then the smell isn't a problem.
Ever had a bad case of chiggers? If so, you wouldn't mind your feet smelling like sulfur.

John_V 04-28-14 01:07 PM

Mmmm! Ask anyone from Florida .... you haven't seen annoying bugs until you ride through miles and miles of Florida Lovebugs during April/May and August/September when they swarm while mating. They are just now getting started and should be out in full force next month.

BlazingPedals 04-28-14 07:48 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dudelsack (Post 16706724)
How do you make a bug ramp?

You mean a ramp made out of bugs? What I've seen done is punch a couple of 1/2" holes, 2/3 of the way up the sides. Then for each hole, cut a 3/4" x 2" piece of plastic, roll it a bit and stuff it in the hole, with the outside end drooping down a bit. Wasps land on it, climb in, and can't get back out.

While I was searching for a picture, I found this. It appears to be just as effective and lots easier.


Dudelsack 04-28-14 08:05 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BlazingPedals (Post 16710689)
You mean a ramp made out of bugs? What I've seen done is punch a couple of 1/2" holes, 2/3 of the way up the sides. Then for each hole, cut a 3/4" x 2" piece of plastic, roll it a bit and stuff it in the hole, with the outside end drooping down a bit. Wasps land on it, climb in, and can't get back out.

While I was searching for a picture, I found this. It appears to be just as effective and lots easier.


There's something uncomfortably genocidal about all this.

Zinger 04-28-14 09:41 PM

I've done most of my riding with some loose legged touring shorts. But boy when a wasp flies into your shorts it gets regrettable for a few exciting seconds.


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