"The sea, once it casts its spell, holds one in
its net of wonder forever."—Jacques Cousteau

January 15, 2015

Jan. 15 – Pesky Little Visitors

Sombrero Resort & Marina

“One’s destination is never a place, but rather a new way of looking at things.” ― Henry Miller

The weather in the Keys is wonderful this time of year, but Florida has a pesky little flying insect that drives people crazy…when it’s gnawing on your flesh it feels like they must be related to a shark. Something with large very sharp teeth…but when you try to see what is eating you alive you can’t see anything! They look like pollen or little flakes of dust in the air. They’re called no-see-um, also known as sand gnats, granny nippers, biting midges or punkies. Their bites are irritating, painful, and can cause long-lasting annoying lesions. The females inject saliva into the skin, which pools the blood just beneath the surface, resulting in a small red dot that becomes excruciatingly itchy. A single bite can welt into a large spot, which lasts about two weeks. Lucky, I think I’ve gotten a little immune to them in the past few years, instead of itching for weeks and leaving sores on my body, they only irritate me while they are biting me. Some evenings they are worse than others and they can definitely distract us from enjoying a sunset. I guess it’s just the price we have to pay to enjoy life in paradise.

This is what you think they must look like...
In reality this is what they look like...even smaller sometimes!
These are the welts they can leave behind. (All pictures are from the Internet)


  1. AKA Gnats in South Louisiana, Marsh fishemen here apply Skin so Soft or a Vanilla scented body spray from dollar stores, both help but the smell of the body spray is maybe worse than the bites, to me anyway. There is a Monk Owners rendezvous in Ft Myers Feb 27-30 are you folks going?

    1. I was going to add a line about bug spray...and not wanting to spell like OFF all night! I do have a vanilla spray from CVS that works well when I remember to use it. We know another boat or two that will be there, but we're staying here in paradise for now.