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When is mosquito season in Japan?

Sydney
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When is mosquito season in Japan?
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This probably sounds like a really weird question, but I don't react well to mosquito/flea/etc bites - the affected area usually comes up in large lumps, and I itch for days and even weeks after, with marks lingering for many months. And the wretched things will invariably target me over anyone else in the room!

I'll be travelling to Tokyo, Shirakawago/Takayama, Kyoto/Nara, and Osaka/Hiroshima over 2 weeks at the end of September/beginning of October. Does anybody know if mosquitos be active in these areas at that time? Just so I know what to expect...

Sapporo, Japan
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1. Re: When is mosquito season in Japan?
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I have similar problems- with blistering if I don't slap steriod/antihistamine cream on them quick enough.

In late September/early October there will still be some of the Evil ones around especially out in the countryside at dusk. The numbers should be less though.

Tokyo should be ok, but if you're around any of the parks around dusk there might be some around.

I got munched last year in Hakone and around Kyoto especially Kinkakuji (the evil ones have stripes like tigers and are freakishly large IMO). Mostly I got bitten because I forgot to put adequate protection on though.

Oz
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I will have to agree with Sapporolite, the mosquitoes in Japan ARE large! There always seems to be one peskie fellow hanging around...never experienced a swarm.. bitten on two occassions in Kyoto..during March and September.

The Japanese seem to use DDT or DEET insect repellant so I would suggest taking a roll on Aeroguard. If you get a little bite, apply the Aeroguard on the bite directly sometimes this takes away the sting and reduces the severity of the reaction...

Disclaimer: I am not a doctor

Sydney
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Thanks for the prompt replies, Sapporolite and SmooOz. Those mozzies sound scary, and I have to admit my heart sank a little when I read your posts. But forewarned is forearmed, so I'll try to be diligent with applying the insect repellent.

Sapporo, Japan
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They're big enough to see coming if that helps. I'm sure you'll have a fabulous time anyway, its only some parts and times of the day that you need to worry about. All the main parts of the cities should be free

Auckland, New...
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Hi djinooi'

<<< They're big enough to see coming >>> .

They also occasionally do battle with Godzilla.

Buy a repellent before you go. Favourite place for mozzies is around the ankle area so apply some repellent there, on the outside of the calf muscles and also back of hands.

Cheers.

Tokyo, Japan
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Aw, shucks. Godzilla? That's because they're as big as Mothra! :-)

There are many insect repellant brands here that work well with the local mosquitoes. (I think the sprays all speak different languages when combatting their local pests.) DEET is not used in the Japanese stuff, so if you want something powerful, be sure to get them in your own country (if they are available).

Otherwise, you can buy Skin Guard (Japanese version of OFF made by Johnson) for prevention and Una-Kowa for after you get bitten. Una-Kowa works like a charm.

There are also "bracelets," hook-on-your-belt battery-operated "fans" which have high frequency buzzing that imitates male mosquitoes (to ward off the females which do the biting), door hangie thingies, and of course, the traditional mosquito "incense" coils.

It the temperature cools off, the end of September means the end of mosquito season. But just to be on the safe side, wear long pants and socks at dusk. And keep both hands free for slapping the air.

Oz
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Hi Mamajelli,

I mentioned the DEET product as this was offered to me at a Japanese guesthouse in Nara....something I would not want to put on my skin although I'm glad you mentioned that you can purchase other products in Japan..thanks :-)

Tokyo, Japan
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Hi, SmooOz,

I looked and looked for DEET products when we were heading to Kenya and couldn't find anything. In fact, I was told by the Japanese pharmacist that it was "too strong," hence, not authorized here. (J-bug spray says "alcohol and fragrance." I think the fragrance is the killer -- at least it chokes up the sprayee!) My daughter who was in college in LA brought some DEET spray home so we would be well prepared. Alas, not a mosquito was seen -- last December/January! Didn't need to take the malaria pills, either. :-)

BUT, I have since gone back to the pharmacist -- and this year, they have Skin Guard WITH DEET! Not as much as what's in the US proto-type, but it definitely says DEET-O on the small print. (No "fragrance," though. lol)

When buying products, be sure to ask beforehand.

Happy slapping.

Sydney, Australia
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You guys have made my day with your comments about mosquitos big enough to fight Godzilla. I hadn't even thought about mossies for our trip in Sept. I'll be sure to pack some roll on Aeroguard. As the ad says "don't leave home without your aeroguard".

Sydney
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Thanks for the advice, everybody. SmooOz, I'm with you about not necessarily wanting to have DEET on me.

Mamajelli, the tips you've provided about the various alternatives are good, too. I haven't used the coils since I was growing up in Malaysia (quite a number of years ago now!) - is the smell noticeable? Would they be suitable for use in a minshuku/ryokan?

Re wearing long pants and socks - sensible advice, but it doesn't always work for me. I have been bitten before even though I was wearing jeans and long socks pulled up to just below my knee. The bite (on the calf where the socks ended) swelled up to a height of about 5mm, and covered an area ca. 5cm in diameter. One of my more extreme reactions, but not something I want when I'm on holiday! I'll keep an eye out for post-bite creams, too. Do you know what ingredients are used in the Japanese one you suggested?