Summer Bugs Aim to Make You Miserable

Some of us aren’t too crazy about cold weather. Especially if we live in an area of the country where it seems like winter goes on far too long. But at least we don’t have to worry about backyard bugs when it’s cold out.

Well, winter is now a distant memory. But the reminder of a bug-filled summer is fresh in our minds as we see mosquitos and other annoying and potentially dangerous flying insects invade our backyards.

Many of these bugs have been in some form of hibernation since late last fall. Others may have been hanging out inside your attic or walls. Still others have migrated north as the weather warms. 

Today I want to talk about the types of bugs we’re likely to see in the coming months. As well as the harm they can do and the importance of keeping them off our bodies.

No. 1 pest? The mosquito

First and foremost is the mosquito. Other than providing food for birds, it seems like they are a punishment for mankind. Not that we don’t deserve it.

Their bites cause our skin to swell up and result in considerable itching. And that’s if we’re lucky.

If we’re unlucky, they could spread serious diseases including West Nile virus, heartworm, malaria, dengue fever and chikungunya.

In a moment I’ll give you some advice for avoiding mosquito bites. These precautions are easy to follow and effective.  

Bees, wasps & hornets

Other flying bugs include bees, wasps and hornets. As a general rule, they won’t bother you if you don’t bother them.

However, it’s easy to inadvertently bother them. Especially if you accidentally get near one of their nests. 

Bee, wasp and hornet stings can be extremely painful. And if you’re allergic to them, they can be very dangerous. Some victims of these stings have died from their throats swelling up.

If you suddenly see a bee or wasp in your vicinity, try to hold still. Usually they will quickly discover you are not a flower and be on their way.

Ants range from meek to dangerous

Ants don’t fly, but this bug can put a damper on a picnic. The average ant doesn’t pose much of a physical threat, but fire ants certainly do.

If you’ve ever disturbed a large mound of fire ants, you know what I mean. They will latch on and sting, injecting a toxic alkaloid venom into their victims.

They’ve even been known to congregate in the hundreds or thousands to attack and sometimes kill small animals.

The crazy ant – which gets its nickname from its frantic and erratic behavior – can actually chew through electrical wiring.  

More blasted bugs 

Among other bugs you should watch out for – depending on which part of the country you live in – are the following:

  •  Spiders. Black widows and brown recluses are particularly dangerous.
  •  Bed bugs. Causing severe itchiness, they’re very challenging to get rid of.
  • Termites. Far more than a nuisance, they cause billions of dollars of property damage every year.
  • Ticks. They can spread Lyme disease so we need to check ourselves regularly after being on our lawns or in a wooded area.
  • Cockroaches. They prefer the indoors and are attracted to food that is left out.

How to avoid mosquito bites

Getting back to mosquito bites, you’re better off avoiding them than treating them. Use a mosquito repellent. There are over-the-counter sprays and rub-ons containing DEET. If you want to avoid that chemical, make your own concoction.

Mosquitos aim for thin-skinned areas because they can get to your blood easier. Apply it to exposed areas of skin. Focus on your feet, ankles, lower legs and wrists.

They’re also attracted to dark colors. Wear light-colored clothing when you’re outdoors. Long sleeves and pants can be helpful for avoiding bites. A thicker fabric with a looser fit is preferable to tight-fitting, thin fabrics.

Avoid the outdoors around dawn and dusk. That way your blood won’t be available to them during their favorite parts of the day. When indoors, keep windows closed. Make sure screens don’t have holes in them.

How to treat mosquito bites 

Scratching mosquito bites usually makes them itch more and longer. That’s not a good “treatment.”

If you break the skin while scratching, you can expose yourself to an additional infection. Wash the area with soap and water, then cover it with a bandage.

Ice will slow blood flow to the area, thereby reducing inflammation and swelling. Apply aloe vera directly to the bite to relieve itching and discomfort. Or press a steeped chamomile tea bag to your bite.

Some folks apply other items to their bites. Including honey, vinegar and even an oatmeal paste. Others like to use hydrocortisone cream or take an antihistamine.   

Nothing to see here, little bug… ZAP!

As we’ve seen, mosquitos and other bugs can be very annoying when we’re trying to enjoy the outdoors. And if that weren’t enough, they can also spread disease. Both to us and to our pets.

So, let’s keep them at bay this spring, summer and fall. My suggestion for accomplishing that task is the BugOUT Solar Lantern from 4Patriots. It’s lightweight (just one pound) but does the job. We call it the king of bug-zappers.

With its solar panel, the BugOUT Solar Lantern charges in the sun. And it’s rainproof and water-resistant. It both attracts and kills bugs. Without using pesticides or chemicals. And it cleans itself every 72 hours.

It features three different light settings and serves as a decorative light. You can take this compact and portable lantern anywhere you go. It has a convenient handle so you can hang it on a tree branch at your campsite or on a clothesline in your backyard. 

Protect yourself, your backyard guests and your pets with the BugOUT Solar Lantern. Here’s how to get yours…


  • Vicki Bouchard - May 15, 2022

    The sun kettles are great for heating chicken noodle soup, my favorite! They boil water great! I wondered…but they are really useful! We had some leftover biscuits. They warmed them!
    So, dry ingredients can be heated!

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