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Re: [ft-l] Re: sulpher powder



The term "chigger" is a common name used to describe the larval stage of a
certain group of mites. These mites are parasitic on warm-blooded animals
during their larval development and produce bites that cause intense itching
and the formation of small, reddish welts. Chiggers are active from spring
to late fall but are most numerous in early summer when weeds, grass and
other vegetative undergrowth are at their heaviest.
Chiggers are closely related to ticks and spiders and pass through the same
four stages of development: the egg, larva, nymph, and adult. Adult chiggers
spend the winter in protected locations and become active in early spring.
After mating, female mites deposit their eggs in grassy or weedy areas.
These eggs hatch into larvae (chiggers) that must feed on a warm-blooded
animal in order to complete their development. After feeding, the larva
detaches from the animal and finds a protected place on the ground where it
develops through the nymph stage into an adult. Both nymphs and adults feed
on insect eggs or small insects. Under favorable conditions, most chigger
species complete their development in about 40 to 70 days.

In the larval stage, chiggers are orange, yellow or light red and are less
than 1/150 of an inch in diameter. These larvae can barely be seen as they
crawl on the skin surface of the host in search of an appropriate attachment
site. When a suitable location is found, such as a skin pore or hair
follicle, the chigger attaches its mouthparts to the spot. On humans,
chiggers prefer places where the clothing fits tightly over the skin or
where the skin is thin or wrinkled. Contrary to popular opinion, chiggers do
not burrow into the skin or feed on blood. Instead, chiggers inject a
digestive fluid containing enzymes that causes skin cells to rupture. The
ruptured skin cell contents are then utilized as food. Unfortunately, the
digestive fluid injected by the chigger causes affected skin tissue to
become red and swollen. In addition, the bite area will itch intensely for
several days even after the chigger has detached from the skin.

Control of chiggers in parks, recreation areas, or campgrounds is probably
impractical. However, the likelihood of encountering chiggers in these areas
can be reduced by applying personal insect repellents, wearing loose-fitting
clothing, and avoiding sitting or reclining directly on the ground. In
addition, taking a hot, soapy bath or shower immediately after returning
from likely chigger-infested areas can remove most chiggers before they have
had the opportunity to attach and feed. Chiggers may at times become
established in homeowner lawns. In these cases, application of insecticides
approved for turfgrass, such as those containing diazinon or chlorpyrifos,
can be effective in reducing chigger populations.

This article originally appeared in the July 12, 1996 issue, p. 117.

> ----- Original Message -----
> > Sulpher powder is available at nursery and garden supply stores.
> >
> > On Tue, 13 Apr 1999 a chigger afflicted hiker wrote:
> >
> > > Sulpher seems to be a classic answer, but I'm a bit slow to figure all
> this
> > > out.  If your pants don't have cuffs, do you sprinkle it in your
> on
> > > your socks??????  Also, where do you get sulpher powder?  Is it
> expensive?
> >
> > * From the Florida Trail Mailing List | http://www.backcountry.net *
> * From the Florida Trail Mailing List | http://www.backcountry.net *

* From the Florida Trail Mailing List | http://www.backcountry.net *

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