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Dengue in March

Colorado, USA
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Dengue in March

We'd like to take a trip to the Carribean this March but have a 2-year-old (well, 20 mths now) and are concerned about dengue fever. I've spent plenty of time in places with it but I can put deet-based bug juice on; we really can't use that with the little guy. On a trip to the Mid-Atlantic this summer he looked like a pincushion, so many mosquitoes ignored the child-safe bug repellant and bit him. I know there has been dengue on Bonaire. Is March the dry season and, if so, would it be anticipated to recede significantly? Or does no one know?

Marietta, Georgia
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for Beach Vacations, Bonaire
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1. Re: Dengue in March

From my experience (7 visits from Jan through April) the dry season normally starts in Jan, but there are wide variations. For example, last year everything was already dry in Jan and stayed that way for a while. Two years ago there was significant rain pretty well through April. It seems that there are some mosquitoes whether wet or dry, although I'm sure there are fewer in dry weather. On average, March would be safer than Jan, for example, but it is certainly not absolute. Even in March you should probably have a "Plan B".

Dengue fever is an issue in Bonaire, although not a huge one. Two years ago (during that long wet season) a friend we met windsurfing there was apparently bitten their day of arrival and came down with Dengue. They did not realize what it was for about 8 or 10 days when he finally sought medical help. The clinic on the island was very helpful and got him fixed up quickly. Unfortunately, about the time he started feeling well again, it was time for them to leave.

Bonaire
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2. Re: Dengue in March

I certainly understand your concern. We have had a very rainy season. If you have any concerns I might suggest you forgo a trip to the Caribbean. You are going to no doubt stress about this. I am being honest. We don't have a lot of Dengue this year compared to past years. It's Caribbean wide and all of the islands have had a lot of rain lately.

March is much drier but there is no promise. I make my comments considering how sensitive it seems your child is..

Edited: 05 December 2010, 00:18
Willemstad, Curacao
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for Willemstad, Curacao
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3. Re: Dengue in March

Each year we got a couple of dengue cases reported on these islands. March is suppose to be much drier and as a result less mosquitos which will reduce the chance of getting dengue.

Like I said march is suppose to be drier but this yr I do not dare to make any predictions. The weather is very unpredictable till now. We had huge but huge amount of rains till now. But even so there are not that many cases of dengue reported.

The chance of you or your child getting dengue is very slim.

NY, NY
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4. Re: Dengue in March

We went last March (2010) and stayed at the Harbour Village. I did not post a review on this site. I don't know if it was the location of the Harbour Village and the fact there were a lot of drainage places nearby or if the whole island was like this, but--I have never seen so many mosquitos in my life. Every night I would take the electronic zapper and go "hunting" in our roon. I must have killed 20 to 30 each night--no exaggeration. They were everywhere inside and out. They especially liked to hang out in the mosquito netting. My kids got bitten to pieces, even though I liberally applied insect repellant on them before they went to bed each night. Other guests were bitten up as well. One little Danish child had bites all over his eyelids. We had been to Bonaire many years ago and stayed at the condo place next door and did not have this problem, but it could have been a different time of year. Usually we go to Curacao in March and we haven't experienced this level of mosquitos. This was the biggest drawback of the vacation--we couldn't even sit on our patio without getting eaten to pieces. The snorkelling was great--top notch--but the mossies were a real problem for us.

Bonaire
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5. Re: Dengue in March

I live on island and so long as I have the doors closed quickly dawn and dusk, I manage to keep the mossies out pretty well. Sometimes I think the mossies come into the hotel rooms and in between guests the rooms are sprayed. One good spray and then keeping the bedroom door closed should it it.

Marietta, Georgia
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for Beach Vacations, Bonaire
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6. Re: Dengue in March

We just returned from 2 weeks on Bonaire. This has been a very rainy/wet winter for them and there was standing water all over, causing more mossies than usual. Even so, we did not have a problem. They are most noticeable in early evening an early morning. In the mornings we would sit on our little porch with a cup of coffee/tea and I would make a sport of slapping the mossies that landed on my legs before they got through my hair to the skin. (Yes, if you didn't know/guess, I'm a guy.... ladies might not have as much of an advantage at this game.) The other game, which I was getting good at, is to catch them in mid-air. These are very small, rather non-aggressive mossies compared to what we are used to at home.

You will find that many Bonaire properties don't have (effective) screens on their windows; if you open the windows for air, you also get mossies. The place we have been staying (Sonrisa) does have good screens and we typically got one or two mossies in the room each night, just from us going in/out the door, but we were never bothered by them at night. I suggest checking to make sure that any resort does have good screening. Any resort that supplies mosquito netting for inside use probably does not have good screening. Netting is not a good substitute for screens (and keeping the door closed.)

Colorado, USA
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7. Re: Dengue in March

thanks for the input; i think we're going to forego the carribean and go to hawaii (poor us) where at least there don't seem to be as many reports of dengue. maybe i'm becoming the neurotic parent i used to mock in my backpacking days, but hopefully when he turns three we can take him down there, slather him with deet and not worry about it.

Bonaire
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8. Re: Dengue in March

have fun in Hawaii...I think you made a great decision to forgo the Caribbean based on your angst....Have shave ice and plate lunch for me...mahalo

Amsterdam, Nederland
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9. Re: Dengue in March

Hi, any experts on this issue that can advise me on travelling with small children in June to Bonaire ?? In my opinion this is the dry season but please advise.

10. Re: Dengue in March

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