View Full Version : Chigger Nest? HELP!

Jul. 27, 2011, 03:20 PM
My husband and I are looking at a great farm for us. We walked the pasture over the weekend to check the fencing. I went over to one corner that used to have electric fencing while my husband stayed at the top of the hill. Well, lucky him, because I got attacked by chiggers! I have been itching for 2 solid days!!

The corner is fairly close to the barn and I will be walking in the area fairly regularly. Chiggers LOVE me. They see me and see BUFFET!! Is there anything I can do with that corner to rid it of the chiggers? Or do I just need to paint on OFF when I go outside?


Jul. 27, 2011, 04:35 PM
Wrap dryer sheets - any brand - around your ankles, tuck pants inside soxs over dryer sheets. Better if you can wear tall boots over said layers!! Anti - itch cream/spray will help the bites. NO hot showers/bath...it makes the chiggers CRAZY mad!!! Ask me how I know!!!

Tamara in TN
Jul. 27, 2011, 04:39 PM
liquid sevin on the ground if you have an eaxct(ish) area


Jul. 27, 2011, 08:22 PM
Ive always used alcholol on the itchy spots. It seems to make them leave.

Tom King
Jul. 27, 2011, 11:23 PM
Your local farm store should have "HiYield 38". It's good for ticks too. It's just a concentrated permethrin like other insect spays use, but it's the best value.


Jul. 28, 2011, 05:26 AM
Dryer sheets: pretty sure Snopes shot that one down a long time ago.

Jul. 28, 2011, 06:53 AM
They see me and see BUFFET!! Is there anything I can do with that corner to rid it of the chiggers? .

My experience is that chiggers (like ticks) do not like to live in cut grass. I find that you need to cut the grass anyhow, to keep the weeds at bay.

Jul. 28, 2011, 07:07 AM
We bought an old farm and the first couple of trips resulted in mass amount of chiggers.

Once we started cutting grass and bushhogging fields the chigger problem went away.

If have chigger bites, ivermectin spread on top of the bites has been out best solution.

Jul. 28, 2011, 10:33 AM
Agree that chiggers (and ticks) much prefer long, unmown grass. So keep it mowed as low as you can. And then spray your ankles with bug spray before going out there.

And when the chiggers inevitably jump over your spray barricade and get to the back of your knees and, ahem, higher, here's a way to kill the itch for about 8 hours:

Run water, as hot as you can stand without burning yourself, over the itchy area. It will itch like fire for a a minute or so, and then the itch is gone for several hours - the heat depletes the histamine in your body's cells. It really works, also for poison ivy.

Jul. 28, 2011, 11:53 AM
My son had a good case of them recently, probably 200 bites, from his ankles to his waist. He had been in tall grass/weeds. We bought all kinds of topicals but what ended up working for him was to soak in hot water with epson salts and to apply listerine for the itch. The listerine did much better for the itching than anything else and is cheap!

Jul. 28, 2011, 12:00 PM
Go to Sally Beauty Supply and buy the can of hair spray that has the most lacquer in it-----------like White Rain-----------and spray it over the entire area on your body and let it dry. That will suffocate the chiggers. I live in Deep Woods Off cause I do so much bushhogging, etc. I spray my skin then put my socks on and spray them and spray my clothing. I spray my shoes also. And tying up the pants leg is good also.

Jul. 28, 2011, 12:01 PM
I live in the South and have dealt with chiggers, aka redbugs, all my life. The old wives tale that they burrow into your skin and live there is BS. They bite and leave an enzyme that makes them itch for days. They live in grass (even short grass) near water sources as well as in moss - which we have here. I sat on the edge of a pond in mowed grass and enjoyed a bottle of wine with a friend. The next morning my ankles looked like I'd been stuck with a thousand needles. The creatures sneak on you and you don't even feel it! I have found that any regular bug spray - Off, etc - will keep them away. The dryer sheet thing only worls for mosquitoes :winkgrin:. My cajun friends swear by them!

Jul. 28, 2011, 12:10 PM
When we first bought this place and I went out for walks I used to stop on convenient rocks. No old wife wisdom there except maybe I thought the ticks would be less likely to crawl on rocks. DH did not stop on rocks and spent a bit of time scoping out a project, next day he was a mass of chigger bites from the tops of where his boots had been to, well, you know.
After I read up on the little buggers we made sure to mow, and if I went far back I wore long pants, tucked my pants in my socks and sprayed Off on my shoes and socks. I also make darn sure to go indoors and take a soapy shower if I've been out in my shorts doing something as innocent as getting the hose out of the tall grass so DH can bush hog it, because they can be knocked off if you just take your soapy hand and make certain to soap behind the knees and those other spots - where if you don't, you'll be sorry. Itchy anyway, like I am right now.

So yeah, mow, use an insecticide if you want them gone NOW, and dress appropriately. I use calamine and antihistamines for the itch.

Jul. 28, 2011, 12:24 PM
I had never encountered chiggers while living in Texas, but I went on a project in Alabama and ohmygosh. I had an education, that's for sure. Whoever said try Listerine on the bites is exactly right. That was the only thing that worked for me. It works for fire ant bites as well, but I believe it has to be the original Listerine.

One of the guys I worked with would buy dog flea/tick collars and put them at the bottom of his pants, then put his boots on and tuck the pants into the boots. He said that worked well for prevention from getting bitten.

Jul. 28, 2011, 12:30 PM
I am a magnet for every type of summertime discomfort there is: poison ivy, bee stings, tick bites, sand fleas at beach. (I have had all of that multiple times this summer already)

but nothing strikes fear in my heart like chiggers. they are the WORST!

if you can't do the hot water thing all the time, a blowdryer works too, I have had to bring it into work to use it periodically after a chigger attack. *shudder*

Yes, they don't burrow in skin, nail polish does not work. they excrete something that liquifies your skin and then they drink it.

Sep. 7, 2011, 03:45 PM
I just found out it's not the actual chigger that buries itself in your skin; it's the larvae. Anyone who's ever had to deal with one of those pest control (http://www.pestexterminator.com/) conundrums knows the meaning of "itchy.":o

Sep. 7, 2011, 03:49 PM
One more reason I never leave the PNW!:eek: Holy Moly people! I'll put up with earthquakes, volcanoes and unending wet to avoid all ya'lls snakes, ticks and chiggers..oh, and tornadoes and hurricanes:)

Sep. 8, 2011, 11:58 AM
One more reason I never leave the PNW!:eek: Holy Moly people! I'll put up with earthquakes, volcanoes and unending wet to avoid all ya'lls snakes, ticks and chiggers..oh, and tornadoes and hurricanes:)

This New Englander wholeheartedly agrees! :eek::no: Can't escape the tornadoes or hurricanes, though. :(

Sep. 8, 2011, 01:34 PM
I ended up with chigger bites this summer too after spending the afternoon weeding around our wash stall. SO miserable! I have never been so itchy in my life. :no:

So I ended up doing a bunch of research on them. You will hear a lot of old wives tales about them, but here's what I found out:

It is the larvae that is doing the biting.

They do NOT burrow under your skin! They inject a digestive enzyme which continues to cause a reaction even after they are no longer on you.

They will come off when you shower or scratch at the bites. There is no need to put nail polish or hairspray on yourself. :eek:

It can take 2 weeks for the itching to stop. And there's nothing you can do to "cure" it. I found washing with hot water and then putting a topical itch cream on it helps some. Also take oral Benadryl several times a day. (I'll admit that I did try the Listerine as well as hand sanitizer. - it helps temporarily, but I was starting to smell weird :))

Since then we have mowed the grass in that area and I always put Off on myself if I have to go down there. That seems to have helped.

Sep. 12, 2011, 11:29 PM
Do NOT scratch! It can be really easy to get those suckers infected, and boy, I do not wish that upon my worst enemy.

Along the same idea of the lacquer hair spray, clear (or any color, but how many of us want red specks all over) nail polish painted over any chigger bites will suffocate them and you will be just fine. Unfortunately I don't know how to avoid them or keep them from congregating. Good luck!

Sep. 12, 2011, 11:35 PM
Fastest thing have found that works is Absorbine Vet Liniment Gel or for people Absorbine JR both work and in days you have relief and not 6 weeks of itching. I keep it handy now for the horses or my self. My vet swears it is the Alcohol in it 53 percent in this Gel form. Best thing have found even better then Chigex.

Sep. 13, 2011, 08:35 AM
One more reason I never leave the PNW!:eek: Holy Moly people! I'll put up with earthquakes, volcanoes and unending wet to avoid all ya'lls snakes, ticks and chiggers..oh, and tornadoes and hurricanes:)

Don't be so sure they don't exist there because they surely do. At least they did in Kitsap County when we lived there in the early 90s.