The ‘No-see-ums’: A Closer Look at These Tiny Insects & How to Control Them

tiny insects

When it comes to most insects and pests, you usually know if you have a problem. But what if you literally can’t see the pests in question? Then it becomes much harder to fix the problem! Keep reading for some expert information about no-see-ums and the all-important signs you should know to look out for.

What Is a No-see-um?

“No-see-um” is a silly little term for something that is very little but not so silly. They go by many names, but essentially they’re very tiny blood-sucking gnats. They come from a family of biting flies but are almost invisible to the naked eye. That doesn’t stop their bites from being painful, though! Although slow-moving, no-see-ums use their tiny size to sneak into your home and set up camp. 

While most insects that invade your home are drawn to the food and water, these tiny insects are attracted to the scent of human skin. No-see-ums thrive in coastal and humid areas, so if you’re local to Alabama, this is important info for you!

How to Spot No-see-ums

Since you can’t actually spot these pests (they’re smaller than fleas!), there are a few essential things you can be on the lookout for. For starters, these tiny insects are a lot like mosquitoes in terms of breeding and active times. You’ll notice them mostly around dawn and dusk, and they prefer to breed in standing water. 

Unlike mosquito bites—which are mainly itchy—no-see-um bites hurt! But of course, as soon as you go to swat whatever just bit you, you won’t see a thing! In addition to the actual bite hurting, you’ll also notice large, itchy red welts developing a few days after that stinging sensation. If you’re prone to severe allergies, they’ll be itchier than normal. 

To treat no-see-um bites, try not to scratch the spots even though they itch. Aloe vera is a great option to calm down those red spots, as well as over-the-counter itch creams. They should go away after a little bit, but you should see a doctor if they persist. 

How to Prevent No-see-ums

Thankfully, a lot of the ways you can prevent mosquitoes will keep no-see-ums away. 

You should do your best to limit the amount of standing water on your property. That means investing in proper drainage for your yard, emptying out bird baths during peak no-see-um seasons, and turning over buckets or toys that could catch water next time it rains. Keeping your grass and shrubbery neatly trimmed will help as well. 

One of the main differences between these tiny insects and mosquitoes is that they’re actually quite slow! You’ll probably only notice bites from no-see-ums if you’ve been stationary outside. If you’re running around or playing games, they probably won’t get the chance to bite you. 

The Best Way to Get Rid of Tiny Insects

Because they’re nearly impossible to see, the best way to handle a no-see-um problem is with professional pest control. Vulcan Termite & Pest Control can make sure you have a fun, relaxing summer without those pesky bug bites! Give us a call today to get started.