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Ranger Rick
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7 to 12, 12 and up, Under 7
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Avoid Insect Stings and Bites
Bothered by summertime stingers and biters? The best way to deal with bites and stings is not to get them in the first place! Here’s what you can do to try to avoid them.
Step 1
Scent Secrets

Bees and wasps go for flowers. So don’t look or smell like one! Don’t wear bright or flowery colors. Also, don’t wear perfumes or other scented products.

Step 2
Clothing Tips
  • Cover your skin. Wear long sleeves, long pants, and especially shoes. To keep ticks away from your skin, tuck long pants into your socks.
  • Wear light clothing. (Mosquitoes seem more attracted to dark colors, and light clothing makes ticks easier to see.)
  • Shake out your boots, shoes, and other clothing before putting them on if you live around scorpions or dangerous spiders.
Step 3
Know Where and When Insects Hang Out
  • Watch where you reach! Some scorpions and spiders hang out in wood or rock piles and dark corners. Put on garden gloves before reaching into such places. To avoid ticks, don't walk through tall weeds and grass or brush against trees and bushes.
  • Be extra careful outdoors between sunset and sunrise, especially when it is also hot and humid. That’s when mosquitoes are most active.
  • If you have a dog—or a cat that spends time outdoors—make sure they have flea protection. That’s because fleas are usually brought into a house and yard by pets.
Step 4
Don't Attract Bugs with Food or Garbage

Don’t allow water to collect and sit for days in birdbaths, trash bins, or other things in your yard. (This is where mosquitoes like to lay eggs.) Keep food and garbage covered outdoors.

Step 5
Don't "Bug" Them!
  • If you see stingers or biters, admire them from a safe distance—don’t touch, swat, or mess with them. Be especially careful around wasp or hornet nests.
  • Check yourself for ticks regularly. It takes time for bacteria to get from a tick into a bite. If you remove any ticks you find right away, you should be safe. To remove an attached tick, use tweezers to grab it near the head. Then slowly pull it straight out and apply antiseptic to the spot.
  • If you DO get stung or bitten, let an adult know right away so you can get any help you might need. 
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