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All of the commonly used insect repellents, both the spray-on and rub-on kind, have exactly the same active ingredient: N,N-diethyl-m-toluamide -- which, to the great relief of us all, is abbreviated as DEET.

The only difference between the different brands of repellent is the percentage of DEET, which you can see by reading the active ingredients printed on the container. Your favorite brand, Deep Woods OFF, has 25% DEET, which is a goodly amount and ought to be plenty. There are brands with higher amounts, and some of the liquid rub-on types actually are 100% DEET. That's enough to make some people's skin break out -- not most people, but some, particularly kids.

One warning: do NOT spray it anywhere near your car or truck paint, or you will be needing a new paint job. If you wear eyeglasses with plastic lenses, it might be a good idea to take those off before spraying near your face. It's not too friendly to certain brands of plastic watch crystals, either.


Hellfish:
Anyone who would waste Wild Turkey by rubbing it on their hide, would steal sheep and suck eggs. :)
 
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I use anything with deet. The sprays usually have 25%. The 100% is potent - like W.E. says, keep it away from paint, plastic, fly line, fly boxes, tackle boxes, etc. it'll eat it up.

I tried the new stuff that smells like almonds - I didn't feel it was as effective (got bit). I've also tried skin so soft and didn't think it was as effective (though it may be a better option for folks that are sensitive to deet). I've also tried the deet/sunscreen option and thought it worked well except don't forget your ankles.

At night, when camping, I burn one mosquito coil. I learned this in Mexico many years ago. King Soopers sells them, only here, you have to buy them with a clay pot for the ashes to fall into. I am really a believer in them.

 

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This may sound dumb, but I tried it and it worked. Tie a Bounce dryer sheet to your fishing vest and it will keep those little devils away from you. I usually keep about 5 in a plastic bag, and when I get onto the water, I'll pull one out and enjoy my fishing. Another thing is to take B-1 vitamins and don't eat bananas. I do agree with Walking Eagle on the Wild Turkey. That's almost un-American!!!!
 
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If you're talking about mosquitos, deet, as many have said, is the way to go. Somewhere between 25 and 40% (read a study that said 30 some percent was the most effective.) Tried some of that other, natural stuff and it's crap in my opinion. If it's flies, then skin-so-soft is my choice. Seen it work wonders on the killer greenheads of the Jersey shore. Tried the dryer sheets once and wasn't convinced either way.
 
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When the kids played ball, we used the dryer sheets at the games under lights. Seemed to work good and made the folks around you a lot friendlier than fogging them with DEET. Never tried them fishing for some reason but the sheets in a baggie are a good idea. I'm gonna put some in my vest.
 
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I've sat in hunting stands in the Candian/Alaskan north in the middle of insect season with no netting, only 100% deet. They will fly around you, but not land on you. One warning though, if you do somehow miss a spot or don't get complete coverage, the mosquitos and no-seeums will find that spot and eat that spot into hamburger.

I've tried the Skin So Soft by Avon and it doesn't work nearly as well. But you'll have milky soft skin!
 

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3m makes a pretty good repellant. Its really high in DEET to. I can't remember the name. It comes in a tube. It was easier to apply and stayed on better than the cans of DEET we used in Alaska. Skin so soft kinda works as long as the bugs are not hungry.... it does make your skin silky and soft, as Laker Taker and Ed already mentioned.

If you are going into jungles (for fishing), where getting bit could be really bad, there are repelants like Coulstons Duranon, and numerous others, that repel and kill insects. Duranon contains 0.5% Permethrin... You spray it on your clothes, let it dry, it lasts for weeks, even through washings. Permethrin must be nasty stuff, there is a big warning on the label about hazards to humans and domestic animals.

I used a few cans of it when I traveled, and there's notting rong wit me yit, maybe septin my spelin
 

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Ive only had luck with permethrin and DEET based formulas...and ive tried quite a few tricks...even eating match stick heads---someone put out the word once the sulphur would keep the mosquitos off you. (i bet they are still laughing...) anyways, all it seemed to do was give me a bad taste in my mouth, i still got bit.

The permethrin stuff is nasty, and it doesnt really do much for the mosquitos...but it will keep the ticks off you and out of your clothes. i saw some dudes once getting fed up with the bugs and actually spraying it on themselves...but what do you expect from a bunch of dumb army grunts. now i just use DEET, its all that seems to work for me...
 

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i think the trick with the wildturkey is to take it inturnally in suficient quantities so that you exude that special "repelant"

the B1 thing has worked for me. the trick is to take it consistantly for a week or more before going in to the bite zone and keep taking it till you get home. when i was a kid i was always in the bite zone so it took it almost continuously for several years and it sure worked great and i noticed that even years later i still seam to have a residual benifit from it i spent a week in the florida keys a while and i ended up with maybe 2 bites while my camp buddies were eaten alive even with them using all sorts of different repellents
 

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There are other repellants other than Deet.  You need to read the container to find out whether it is deet or not.
As Already mentioned the active ingredient will be listed as N,N-diethyl-m-toluamide (sometimes listed as Deet on the container but not always)

The Center for Disease Control recommends Deet.

See this page for links to the CDC and Web MD for info about repellants - also info about West Nile Virus

http://www.westdenvertu.org/Fishing.htm#virus
 

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several times down on the ark i have been invaded by hoards of no-see-ums they didnt bite but sure would fly into any opening. its not to bad in your mouth or nose as you can spit or blow them out but when they fly down in your ear the little critters crawlling around in there can drive you nuts. thats why i carry some foam earpugs like for shooting and just shove those in there and the no-see-ums cant get in to bug ya
 
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roadkill said:
several times down on the ark i have been invaded by hoards of no-see-ums they didnt bite but sure would fly into any opening. its not to bad in your mouth or nose as you can spit or blow them out but when they fly down in your ear the little critters crawlling around in there can drive you nuts. thats why i carry some foam earpugs like for shooting and just shove those in there and the no-see-ums cant get in to bug ya
That's hilarious RK! Reminds me of a friends account of his first Salmon Fly Hatch on the Yellowstone...had a baseball cap on and one of the flies landed on the bill then took a look underneath - scared the heck out of him!
 

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paddlefish said:
I keep bottles of 100% Deet in my vest and backpacks. If the bugs come, that stops them, especially black flies, which I hate a lot worse than skeeters. You don't need to use a ton at that strength... my understanding is that Deet masks the smells that the bugs key in on.

DO NOT apply 100% Deet with your fingertips unless you want to destroy your fly line. Instead, drip it on the backs of your hands and spread it around that way.
i am curious. What happens to the fly line. Doe it get hard? melt? become forever sticky? refuse to uncoil?
I have not notice a problem I don't get to fish extensively. That may be part of it. I also wipe my hands thoroughly on some rags.... oh , Yeah, thats right ...my shirt and pants.
 
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It becomes sticky and melts

rub some on your hands then grab a piece of clear plastic that you don't care about - you'll see what we're talking about :)
 
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