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FAQs - Biting Insects

Have questions?

Find immediate answers to commonly asked questions, such as do No-See-Ums bite, are No-See-Ums attracted to humans and more.






Q:       What is the name of the little tiny flies that leave horrible bites?
           I called them No-See-Ums but my friend laughed at the name!


A: You are correct, although the name varies throughout the world depending on where No-See-Ums live.  Here in the United States, we refer to them as No-See-Ums.  If you lived in Scotland, you would call them Biting Midges or Highland Biting Midges.  If you lived in Norway, you would call them “Knotts,” and in Canada you would probably call them “Moose Flies.”  If you knew how to speak Gaelic, you would call them meanbh-chuileag which means “tiny fly.”


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Q:       Is there any place I can go to get away from these horrible,
           biting No-See-Ums?  Their bite is really painful.


A:  Well, not unless you wanted to move to Antarctica!  These nasty little biters have even been found on Mount Everest!  I wouldn’t want to be climbing thousands of feet in the air and be attacked by a swarm of these pests.


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Q:      Do No-See-Ums feed on animals as well as people?


A: Actually, No-See-Ums don’t “feed” on animals or people.  They feed on nectar rather than warm blooded creatures.  The females bite humans and animals to draw the blood needed for the development of the eggs.


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Q:      Are No-See-Ums attracted to humans?


A: Yes, it is believed that No-See-Ums are drawn to mammals, including humans by detecting certain odors we emit, particularly the carbon dioxide we exhale and lactic acid.  Using a mosquito trap that uses CO2 as an attractant will help by drawing No-See-Ums to the trap and away from you. Note that the life of a Mosquito Magnet® trap may be impacted if consistently used in areas with dense populations of No-See-Ums. Proper trap maintenance is especially important in these areas.


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Q:      Do No-See-Ums Bite?


A: Yes, No-See-Ums bite. They can also be vectors of diseases, particularly in tropical regions.


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