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Types of bug spray and sunscreen for Ecuador.

wilmington, nc
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Types of bug spray and sunscreen for Ecuador.

Hi. My wife and I are heading to Ecuador next week for 8 days. We will not be in the Amazon area. Pretty much strictly in the cloud forest areas. Is there a special kind of bug spray or sunscreen needed or are any particular kinds forbidden? Any information would be appreciated.

Thanks!

Ottawa, Canada
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1. Re: Types of bug spray and sunscreen for Ecuador.

Depending on the elevation, you may or may not be in the 'malaria zone'(below 4900 ft), so to safeguard, be sure to use a bug spray with 30% or more deet. Mindo is advertising as 'Malaria free' but some of the areas are just above or below this elevation, and if birding and out early morning or dusk, then DEET up to safe guard. It is tropical sun (if there is any) and high altitude in Quito so you may burn fast, so high SPF. Though it is always helpful for the environment, to use environmentally sensitive products, neither of these items are that 'friendly'. Don't skimp on the DEET, but you may consider a Zinc Oxide based sunscreen that would breakdown a bit better. I think the Amazon and Galapagos Islands are more sensitive to product content. You should be fine.

Tucson, Arizona
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2. Re: Types of bug spray and sunscreen for Ecuador.

I can't stand DEET as it degrades clothing and things like the rubbery coverings on your binocs. I prefer products with Picaridin, such as the Natrapel wipes from REI, and I prefer wipes or lotions to sprays that go all over the place and may inadvertently harm other organisms. In Mindo it's unlikely you'll be bothered by mosquitos anyway.

Good sunscreens are readily available in Quito.

Ottawa, Canada
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3. Re: Types of bug spray and sunscreen for Ecuador.

Well, AZ and I are known to have different perspectives in the Malaria in Ecuador debate, but I am willing to learn about other accepted products. I see that this summer, World Health Org has endorsed Picaridin for Malaria mosquito determent, so you have a choice. Thanks AZ

Albuquerque, New...
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4. Re: Types of bug spray and sunscreen for Ecuador.

Here is a good article about DEET vs. Picaridin. Looks like Picaridin is as effective as DEET against malaria carrying mosquitos. I hate DEET, but it is effective not only against mosquitos but also ticks. The one time I failed to use it, while visiting friends in Connecticut, I got Lyme disease. I have tried some other repellants, like cat-nip based ones, and found them to be useless, but I have not tried Picardin. Will have to test it against our local mosquitos here in New Mexico. We have had some rain, so the mosquitos are out.

twp.duke.edu/uploads/assets/Mehta_09.pdf

Benson, Arizona
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5. Re: Types of bug spray and sunscreen for Ecuador.

I have used both and I have never found Picardin as effective as Deet....so I used deet on our recent three months in Ecuador...we did spray our clothes first with a product we bought at REI (unfortunately I can not remember the name) others might..In general I did find that pretty effective and then I just used the Deet product around my ankle, wrists etc...

Tucson, Arizona
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6. Re: Types of bug spray and sunscreen for Ecuador.

Much of the Picaridin one finds in stores is too diluted to last effectively; one source--the CDC, NIH, or some other reputable Web site--recommended a concentration of 20% and that's what Natrapel has.

Albuquerque, New...
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7. Re: Types of bug spray and sunscreen for Ecuador.

The spray for clothes is Permethrin. I bought some at REI and sprayed all our travel clothes before going to Ecuador. You can also buy clothes that have been treated to repel insects. Our next trip will be to Iceland in October, so I am not worried about mosquitos.

8. Re: Types of bug spray and sunscreen for Ecuador.

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