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east coast
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Anyone have a good method to keep the sand flies off?

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1. Re: noseeums

Stay inside. :)

I honestly have found nothing that works well for me, however people swear by Cactus juice. I didn't get a chance to try it but others here have and say it works. You can get it at Bailey's hardware, maybe in the grocery store, but I never saw it. They also sell it at Island pharmacy and the Ace hardware by Mermaid kitchen.

I have used Off products with deet, and it didn't work for me, but regardless that is what always is recommended.

Through experience, I just head inside if the wind isn't blowing, or I regret it.

Sanibel Island...
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2. Re: noseeums

Noseeums (aka sand fleas and sand flies) are actually a gnat (Culicoides furens). Our family has always had good luck using Avon's Skin So Soft to protect ourselves from these annoying critters. When my children were younger, they always enjoyed using SSS because they liked its odor, unlike many other insect repellants. Now, anytime I smell Skin So Soft, I think of Sanibel Island. Of note, SSS keeps the noseeums away, but has no effect on misquitos. So, you may want to use another repellant, in addition to the SSS. Apparently any insect repellant with DEET will work. For more information, you may want to see …about.com/cs/planningyourtrip/a/bugs.htm

Hoxie, Kansas
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3. Re: noseeums

Are these creatures usually a problem in December also?

east coast
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4. Re: noseeums

They are more of a hot weather issue.

Anyone tried the Cactus Juice?

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5. Re: noseeums

I beleive no seeums can be an issue anytime of year but tend to be a bigger problem in warmer months...I am sure a DE will be along to answer better than I can but as I recall they have warned others to be ready just in case. Problem is once you notice they are biting it is too late they've got you. A breeze also helps keep them a bay. Based on others comments on here when we go in Nov. I plan to come prepared just in case...

You can get cactus juice online


or at amazon.com


Saint James City...
Destination Expert
for San Pedro
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6. Re: noseeums

I've always heard that baby oil will keep them at bay. Apparently, they get stuck in it.

The good news about them is that most people seem to be less bothered by them the more they're around them. My husband used to get terrible welts that lasted for several weeks. Now, just a day or two, and they aren't nearly as red or irritating.

I'm lucky, they never have really bothered me.

Wyoming & Sanibel
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12 reviews
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7. Re: noseeums

I am a noseeum magnet and am quite allergic, however, I'm slowly developing some resistance.

They are a year-round problem, but more so in summer. They will be heavier close to vegetation and water and at dawn and dusk. I have not had an opportunity to try cactus juice, I use a lotion (rather than oil-based) deet product that works very, very well -- and I spend the majority of my time in Ding, so I'm at water's edge and around vegetation. Oil-base deet also works well, I just don't like to be so oily and it seems as if persperation dilutes the oil-base more quickly.

Avon Skin So Soft never worked for my husband or me, but others swear by it (I think that's just the people who don't get bit by noseeums or have much of a reaction).

If I'm kayaking in the mangroves where I know I'm prime noseeum bait for hours on end, I wear Columbia long pants & long-sleeved shirt (but I have to wear something underneath, as I've had noseeums fly into the vents, which have a netted fabric which seems to let a few in every trip).

Lenexa, Kansas
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20 posts
11 reviews
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8. Re: noseeums

In regards to the No See Ums...I was pretty concerned with this and I did not want to put DEET on my kids. I used a combination of skin so soft and the Bullfrog sunscreen/insect repellent and we didn't get one bite. I will also say we never stepped foot ANY time of day outside without the above mentioned on. It took a little more time but was well worth it in my book. No bites and no sunburn...what more could you ask for ; )

Decatur, GA
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9. Re: noseeums

Cactus Juice!!! We fished a lot in the evening nothing worked until we got the Cactus Juice. I bought it at Bailey's but I'm not sure if they stock it often, it was in a strange place at the front of the store and there were only two bottles. I saw a HUGE display of it at one of the souvenir shops next to Jerry's, it was the biggest shop, I can't remember the name of it, but they had a bunch. Also, Cactus Juice isn't really marketed as a bug repellent, so don't let that confuse you as to which kind to buy. I was slightly confused by this, it's just mainly marketed as a sunscreen. You definitely have to reapply it often to keep the noseeums at bay, but it worked so well, and it doesn't have any awful chemicals in it ftw.

Green Bay
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10. Re: noseeums

I just returned from a weeks long stay at Casa Ybel-Sanibel and it was my first time. Let me tell all you first timers- BEWARE & BE PREPARED!! I am sitting here after my vacation there is over, with a million bites & ugly scabs on my awesome tan:( We did not have a problem with the no-seeums during the daytime, but we did go to the beach two evenings during low tide and even after wearing bug spray, got eaten alive! We did also have on Avon SSS. The worst was the itching my daughter & I had days after returning home!