When biting is outlawed, only outlaws will bite me.
November 19, 2007 12:00 PM   Subscribe

What's biting me in San Francisco?

Over the last few months, I've noticed the occasional itchy bug bite, but never once seen or felt myself get bitten by anything. If I ignore the itchy spot, it'll diminish within a few hours or a day. I'm not even convinced these _are_ bug bites, but I can't see any pattern to foods eaten or things of that nature that might suggest an allergy. I don't think it's bed bugs, because again I've never seen any in my house, and the bites don't appear in clusters. Sorry this is so vague, I'm just hoping someone will reply and say, "Oh yeah that's the infamous San Francisco fog gnat, everyone gets bitten by those."
posted by autojack to Health & Fitness (8 answers total)
posted by jasper411 at 12:07 PM on November 19, 2007

You've described fleas, alright. Do you have pets? Your vet can give you medicine that will make your pets poisonous to fleas. The problem should diminish dramatically within a couple of days and be gone inside of a month.

Assuming your pets are of the furry cat / dog variety. But I don't think bird fleas actually bite people.

If you don't have pets at all, the fleas might be spillover from a neighbors pets. Fleas are always looking for a free ride & a meal.
posted by TeatimeGrommit at 12:18 PM on November 19, 2007

At a former job, this one guy's office was the nexus of our flea infestations. It turns out he was transporting them from his home.

If the bites are mostly on your ankles, fleas are likely culprits.
posted by mikepop at 12:44 PM on November 19, 2007

It could be spiders at night that bite you when you sleep. This happened to me a lot when I lived in the City.
posted by MrFongGoesToLunch at 12:50 PM on November 19, 2007

Response by poster: I don't have pets, nor do any of my neighbors that I know of. And the bites tend to appear on my chest, arms, and face only. I've never found them anywhere else. I'm starting to re-think whether they might well be hives.
posted by autojack at 1:06 PM on November 19, 2007

Not spiders. Spiders have no incentive to bite. They don't get food from you, and they don't perceive you as a threat unless you're actively poking them, even then they won't bite.

Spiders get a bad rep for no good reason.

(This message brought to you by the Spider Advisory Board.)
posted by lothar at 1:46 PM on November 19, 2007 [4 favorites]

Flea bites come in clusters. I vote mosquitoes.
posted by laconic titan at 2:51 PM on November 19, 2007

Sorry, but if it isn't fleas, then I vote spiders.

While most spiders don't have a need to bite, the common White House Spider WILL bite (especially in your bed), and it leaves a mark (speaking from experience).
posted by coollibrarian at 4:51 PM on November 28, 2007

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