Natural repellent for gnats, flies and mosquitoes

MatskevichFarm

In the Brooder
Mar 13, 2016
26
1
32
Hey, guys!

We live in CT, and summer is just around the corner, and during this time of the year and can just be carried way by those nasty bugs.

We thought that the natural line of Cutter bug repellent would be okay, but after talking to their customer service we found out that it's also dangerous for the girls.

So here is my inquiry, does anyone know any way to repel those bugs and also keep the girls safe while grazing around?
Thank you so much!
 

SueT

Enabler
Premium Feather Member
7 Years
May 27, 2015
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Well, the chickens dust bathing protects them from pests. And they eat the larger insects like ticks. When we had donkeys, our guineas ate flies off their legs. I'd say they are equipped to handle the summer bugs...
 

MatskevichFarm

In the Brooder
Mar 13, 2016
26
1
32
But what about the rest of the backyard? We have a decent size area where we keep our vegetable garden and also the area around the deck.
When we have barbecues, it's almost impossible to be outside because of those tiny flies and mosquitoes. I get particularly bad reactions to mosquitoes bites, and natural spray repellents that they sell at Whole Foods do not work.
 
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SueT

Enabler
Premium Feather Member
7 Years
May 27, 2015
10,786
36,875
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SW MO
Oh I see. You weren't talking about putting it on the chickens...have you tried mosquito coils or citronella torches? Or electronic bug zapper lights?
We don't have many mosquitoes here but I get bad reactions to chiggers, invisible mites that live in the grass. I use regular insect repellent (deet containing) on my boots and clothes and that keeps them and the ticks off as well. I don't put it on my skin. Your'e right, the natural repellents really don't work.
 

EggSighted4Life

Crossing the Road
6 Years
Apr 9, 2016
15,235
21,772
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California's Redwood Coast
But what about the rest of the backyard? We have a decent size area where we keep our vegetable garden and also the area around the deck.
When we have barbecues, it's almost impossible to be outside because of those tiny flies and mosquitoes. I get particularly bad reactions to mosquitoes bites, and natural spray repellents that they sell at Whole Foods do not work.
I used a lemon eucalyptus spray that worked quite well. Think it was made by OFF or one of those brands, and it was a pump. It did have to be reapplied every couple hours and they still hovered super close but never landed. It tastes aweful to!
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But camping with out repellent is terrible. Now I live in the PNW and skeeters are so big here you might need a transfusion if you get bit. My daughter swell to baseball sized lumps when she gets bit.

Keeping you lawn mowed low helps. I read things planted like mint and cat nip... but watched the skeeters land on the mint when it isn't freshly cut.

A fan really works on my patio. My hens don't have much issue. They often hunt them, but of course are out numbered.

Fun fact... did you know only female mosquitoes bite because they need the blood to be able to lay eggs. But the male skeeters feed on nectar (or pollin, can't remember which).
I use permethrin on my goats for mosquitoes, labeled as horse fly spray but has other insects listed. However, I believe it kills them, not repells them. There are organic versions called pyrethrin and I think elector PSP. Permethrin is the synthetic verion of those which are supposed to be a chrysanthimum extract, I believe. It says it can be sprayed on the walls as well.

There was a time when they were so bad and get in when you open a door that I put deet on myself everynight before bed in order to sleep in peace. Glad we aren't there anymore... who knows what I would have ended up with long term. Sometimes when you're desparate, you gotta do what you gotta do.

Eucalyptus has been effective at repelling many bugs, in my experience.

Also... we got some screen tents to keep the meat bees away, but it worked well for mosquitoes to... they were only like $20 at Wally and big enough to go around a whole picnic bench with room for waliking around. Well worth the extra hassle of zipping to get in and out. We even set up 2, one for the picnic bench and one for hanging out in our chairs. Highly recommended!

Ok so another trick... some people use those CO2 burners to attract mosquitoes away from their BBQ area. Another way to achieve the same effect is placing a zip lock bag with some dry ice in it and only a small opening. It should attract them and trap them.

One more... Some sugar water in a 2 lliter with the top cut off and inverted to funnel them in while making it difficult to get out... And active dry yeast... the yeast will produce CO2. That will have to be experimented with as to how much sugar/yeast will work with your temps. Won't work for me as my temps are too low to create a big enough reaction.

Nats, even wasps... a little acv with water in a dish and a drop of dish soap to break the surface tension of the water. They are attracted to it and slip in to die. This works, but not sure on what scale. We use it for fruit flies and my MIL uses for wasps.

I guess you can tell I put a lot of prior effort into avoiding mosqiutoes!

I also researched some plug in traps, but reviews didn't add up to being worth my time.

Good luck. Let us know if you find anything super effective.
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