Scotland ESPECIALLY bad for midges this year?

Specific board for this popular undertaking.
tbessie
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Scotland ESPECIALLY bad for midges this year?

Postby tbessie » 11 May 2017, 5:41am

A friend sent me this:

https://stv.tv/news/features/1388044-mi ... ting-bugs/

... basically it says that this will be a particularly bad year for midges.

I've definitely seen my share of midges and mosquitoes in various parts of the world, but the way people talk about the ones in Scotland, it is scaring me a bit. I see those photos of GIANT CLOUDS of the critters, and it's making me reconsider; maybe I should tour Italy, France or the Czech Republic or something this year? ;-)

What do you think, folks? In a "bad midge year" do you find that wherever you go, any time, day or night, you are battling clouds of ravenous midges? Or that it's an "every once in awhile" kind of thing, and mostly at dawn/dusk?

I'm planning starting my trip from Lancaster in mid-June, going a few days into July, via the Islands and central northern Highlands.

- Tim

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Lance Dopestrong
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Re: Scotland ESPECIALLY bad for midges this year?

Postby Lance Dopestrong » 11 May 2017, 7:31am

West coast, inner and outer Hebrides can be uncomfortable with them. I hail from the Northern Isles, never a problem there.
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Re: Scotland ESPECIALLY bad for midges this year?

Postby hilloverthehill » 11 May 2017, 3:15pm

Don't let it put you off. They don't like bright sun and hot days, and the lightest of breezes will send them packing. If you're camping try and pick a spot that catches the breeze.
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Re: Scotland ESPECIALLY bad for midges this year?

Postby brynpoeth » 11 May 2017, 4:55pm

Forecasts about midges are unreliable, especially when they concern the future (after Mark Twain). In truth midges and other insects do have their place in the scheme of things

Vultures for example clean up rotting carcasses and eat diseased meat without suffering

Only today I read about a project called "Insect Respect". Reckhaus in Bielefeld produces insect control stuff. The MD realised that insects are often benevolent and started helping preserve habitats. One could hardly make it up!

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yann
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Re: Scotland ESPECIALLY bad for midges this year?

Postby yann » 31 May 2017, 4:53pm

Every year is a "bad year" for midges in Scotland. It is a bit like saying "Scotland is so lovely and green...but it seems to rain all the time!" (it does, usually , rain a lot)- but there are good times in between!

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John1054
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Re: Scotland ESPECIALLY bad for midges this year?

Postby John1054 » 31 May 2017, 6:42pm

Bad midges yesterday evening at Bunree, near Onich; good bike ride today - no problem.

loch eck steve
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Re: Scotland ESPECIALLY bad for midges this year?

Postby loch eck steve » 31 May 2017, 9:23pm

Pretty bad here in Argyll , but no more then normal .

robing
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Re: Scotland ESPECIALLY bad for midges this year?

Postby robing » 31 May 2017, 9:43pm

They won't be a problem when you are cycling. Worst time is when you set up camp so cover up, a midge net is essential. Smidge is pretty good too. Some say eating Marmite deters them..

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Sweep
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Re: Scotland ESPECIALLY bad for midges this year?

Postby Sweep » 15 Jul 2017, 10:12am

I well remember being driven almost to tears by midges in Scotland when car camping. Can't remember where. Was probably first half of July.

Pretty much decided that if I go cycle touring there I'll at least take some sort of hat/face net.

Just seen this, and so sought out this thread.

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Outdoor-Trave ... 2042864406

It looks rather convincing to me. Even has mesh socks. Total enclosure.

If the midges die laughing, still a solution.

Opinions?

I am, as you folks may guess, rather tempted.
Sweep

robing
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Re: Scotland ESPECIALLY bad for midges this year?

Postby robing » 18 Jul 2017, 12:27pm

Sweep wrote:I well remember being driven almost to tears by midges in Scotland when car camping. Can't remember where. Was probably first half of July.

Pretty much decided that if I go cycle touring there I'll at least take some sort of hat/face net.

Just seen this, and so sought out this thread.

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Outdoor-Trave ... 2042864406

It looks rather convincing to me. Even has mesh socks. Total enclosure.

If the midges die laughing, still a solution.

Opinions?

I am, as you folks may guess, rather tempted.


That looks pretty good! I have a midge net for head/neck but if you cover up that still leaves your hands. I'm surprised you had such a miserable time when you had your car for refuge! The worst times are definitely when you are setting up/taking down camp or cooking as you are a sitting target. The Outer Hebrides certainly a lot less midgy than the Inner Hebrides or west coast mainland.

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Sweep
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Re: Scotland ESPECIALLY bad for midges this year?

Postby Sweep » 18 Jul 2017, 2:05pm

The main problem was when i was cooking rob.

I didn't fancy retreating to the car, so we sheltered in the tent.


Glad you liked my suggestion :)

If anyone goes for it, reviews welcome.
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Re: Scotland ESPECIALLY bad for midges this year?

Postby Vorpal » 18 Jul 2017, 3:13pm

Some mosquito net is not fine enough for midges. If I were considering buying something like that, I would check what size the mesh is. Other than that, it looks like a good solution.
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robing
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Re: Scotland ESPECIALLY bad for midges this year?

Postby robing » 18 Jul 2017, 4:02pm

I think you can get midge gloves too. With a head net and fully clothed you should be ok. Midges can't bite through clothing, unlike clegs!
Smidge works pretty well for me too and is much more pleasant to apply than DEET based repellents. I might try eating Marmite next time, should result in a 50% reduction in bites ;)

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Re: Scotland ESPECIALLY bad for midges this year?

Postby Barks » 18 Jul 2017, 11:56pm

What's a Cleg?

robing
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Re: Scotland ESPECIALLY bad for midges this year?

Postby robing » 19 Jul 2017, 1:29am

A horsefly. A few years ago I cycled up the west coast of Scotland in beautiful weather - a heatwave. The hot weather deterred the midges but the clegs were out in force. They can bite through Lycra and also can follow you on a bike especially when you are going slowly eg uphill. Midges can't get you when you are moving.