For anyone who is sensitive to mosquito bites asking if there are mosquitoes in Fuerteventura is a fair question if you are planning to visit the island. Well I am sorry to disappoint you but actually there are. However, don’t get too worried as although they are found here, they are not a massive problem as they can be elsewhere.
Mosquitoes can be found in Fuerteventura at almost any time of the year but never in great numbers. This is largely because there is little standing water in Fuerteventura which mosquito larvae need to develop in.
This is fortunate for those living in Fuerteventura or visiting for holidays but it is often not the case with many other relatively hot countries. Why we are different is due to the reasons below.
Fuerteventura mosquito season
There is actually no definable mosquito season in Fuerteventura. Potentially if we have lots of rain in the winter the mosquitoes could breed easier in the puddles and other areas of water that would exist (for a while anyway) but I haven’t really noticed a significantly higher number in the rare times that we have had an appreciable amount of rain.
My perception of the Fuerteventura mosquito season is that perhaps there seem to be slightly more in the warmer months of the year, but that is hardly significant.
However, I have asked some of my friends here when they think the mosquito season is and their opinions all vary – some say in the winter while others say in the summer. I think it goes to show that there really aren’t many at any time of the year so no-one can really say that there is actually a Fuerteventura mosquito season.
The only sure thing it is possible to say is that, what mosquitoes there are in Fuerteventura, are generally more active in the evening and at night than during the day.
The last time I can remember having to kill more than the odd one or two in my bedroom before I went to sleep was in November 2018. So perhaps I could say that November is the worst month for mosquitoes – but I really can’t say it is ever that noticeable and that certainly wasn’t the case in November 2019.
Oddly, one of the most frequently asked questions on Google about mosquitoes here is “Are there mosquitoes in Fuerteventura in February?” Why that should be asked much more than for any other months I have no idea. The answer of course is, just like any other month, yes, but not very many.
Why aren’t there many mosquitoes in Fuerteventura?
There are two reasons why there aren’t too many mosquitoes in Fuerteventura.
- Part of the life cycle of a mosquito is its larvae stage. At this stage they live in water for around 10 days, often in ponds, ditches and stagnant water. Because Fuerteventura gets little rainfall there is very little water that sits for any length of time. Even when we get rain in the winter, water doesn’t last very long before it either soaks away or evaporates. So mosquitoes have little chance to develop from the larva stage to their next stage.
- Mosquitoes find it hard to locate hosts to bite when there is any wind greater than 10mph. One of the advantages of Fuerteventura being a windy island is that it is often above this speed so keeps them at bay. Of course, any mosquitoes that manage to find it into a house or hotel room will not have any wind to deal with then.
Mosquitoes can be a nightmare, particularly for some people, who end up with huge red swollen bumps all over themselves after being bitten. Reacting to mosquito bites even has a name as it is known as Skeeter Syndrome.
Personally I am one of those lucky people that either doesn’t get bitten by mosquitoes or who doesn’t react to them (1 in 10 humans apparently). I remember being on holiday with my ex-wife many years ago and, as it was really hot, we both slept on top of the bed without clothes on, leaving the window open. In the morning she had 40-50 big bites all over her body and I had nothing.
But that said, I still absolutely hate mosquitoes! Although I don’t get bitten, I am a very light sleeper and whenever a mozzie flies by my ear it wakes me up. I then have to get up, turn the light on, grab the fly swat and hunt for her (and they are the females which do this and which bite). If I can’t find the annoying creature I have to give up and go back to bed but then I lay there awake listening out for it.
Fuerteventura mosquito scaremongering
Although mosquitoes can carry some pretty nasty things such as dengue fever, yellow fever and malaria as well as the West Nile and Zika viruses, the mosquitoes in Fuerteventura do not.
Back in December 2017 the British press did what it does best by publishing false, ridiculous, scare-mongering articles about there being mosquitoes carrying dengue and yellow fever that had been discovered in Fuerteventura. This was totally false and just designed to cause fear and to sell their stupid newspapers.
These were two such irresponsible articles written by the scumbags in the British press:
- Daily Express – Canary Islands yellow fever outbreak: Is Brit holiday spot Fuerteventura a disease risk?
- The Sun – YELLOW WARNING Canary Islands holiday hotspot Fuerteventura faces outbreak of deadly yellow and dengue fever as swarm of disease-carrying mosquitoes descends on island
Are there mosquitoes on the other Canary Islands?
Perhaps unsurprisingly it is the same situation with regard to mosquitoes in Lanzarote, Gran Canaria and Tenerife too. Yes, there are mosquitoes but not many at least for most of the year!
How to avoid being bitten by Mosquitoes
Even though there are no many mosquitoes in Fuerteventura, if you are susceptible to being bitten and react badly to them, then it would be sensible to take precautions.
There are probably hundreds of old wives tales about how to stop mosquitoes from biting. Some of these have some merit and many simply do not.
The ingredient that seems to give the most effective protection in mosquito repellents is DEET. The most popular on Amazon containing it is the Pyramid Trek 50 Insect/Mosquito Repellent Deet Spray.
If you prefer natural products then the Incognito Insect Repellent Spray 100ml (Natural, DEET free formula) has many good reviews
Although it is a skin softener, and not actually a mozzie repellent, I have heard many times that members of the British armed forces use the Avon product “Skin So Soft” when they are in the jungle or in other places where mosquitoes and other biting insects are likely to be. It always makes me smile to think of tough SAS soldiers rubbing Skin So Soft on but if it works then why not. My wife has certainly used it successfully.
Skin So Soft can actually be bought on Amazon if you want to give it a try and bring some out here with you.
Other ways to prevent being bitten
There are numerous ways that are suggested but the most popular appear to be:
- Spray the bedroom with mosquito killer spray before going to bed. This is something my wife likes to do but I hate. I really don’t think that breathing in the remnants of that insecticide all night is good for you, in the long term anyway.
- Vitamin B1 – taking large quantities is supposed to produce a skin odour that flying insects, and mosquitoes in particular, don’t like.
- Lemon eucalyptus – often found in natural mosquito repellents
- Catnip oil – nepetalactone is the essential oil found in catnip and is supposed to be effective as a mosquito repellent
- Peppermint oil – this can be sprayed on the skin to deter mosquitoes
- Lemongrass oil – diluted it can be used in a spray but it can be an irritant to some people
- Use an electric fan (as they don’t like the wind)
- Citronella candles (lemon is something of a theme to get rid of mozzies)
What to do if you get bitten
Don’t scratch them – no matter how much you mat want to. This could lead to infection.
According to Webmd you should:
- wash the area with soap and water
- put calamine lotion on to sooth the skin and reduce itching
- Put an ice pack on the bite
- Take an over the counter anthistamine
Here is Fuerteventura many recommend Fenistil which is an antihistamine cream that you should be able to get it in any Pharmacia on the island. Just speak to the Pharmacist (many speak English).
Do you get cockroaches in Fuerteventura?
In common with most places in the world that are fairly hot, Fuerteventura does have cockroaches. Frankly, if you want some warmth on your holiday, no matter where you go, you are likely to see the odd cockroach around.
Generally they are not a big problem here in Fuerteventura or the Canary Islands. You probably won’t see more than the odd one scuttle across a pavement in front of you, particularly in the evening, or perhaps the odd squashed one. That is if you see one at all.
If you find any in your hotel room, or in an apartment you are renting, then mention it to the management and they will probably do something about them. You could also buy a Cockroach killer spray in one of the local supermarkets quite cheaply.
They say you shouldn’t squash them as they could be a female with eggs in which case you may spread the eggs around. To be honest I have jumped on some in my house and never seemed to have made the matter worse.
Are there spiders in Fuerteventura?
There are spiders in Fuerteventura but nothing large and hairy. Actually most are so small you are unlikely to actually see them. I get the odd small cobweb around my house but hardly ever actually see the spider that made it.
There is a type of tiny, white spider that is unique to Fuerteventura that lives in a lava cave in Villaverde.
Are there snakes in Fuerteventura?
No there are no snakes in Fuerteventura, apart from those that may be in Oasis Park zoo (and I didn’t see any when I went there).
There are some snakes in Gran Canaria which have all breed from a pair of pet snakes that were stupidly released in the wild.
Neither are there any scorpions in fuerteventura or any other harmful, poisonous insects or other animals. There may be the odd man-eating rabbit though!
The only dangerous creature that exists in Fuerteventura is man.
Things you may see
I love geckos. You may well see them at night on walls, particularly near outside lights, where they wait patiently to catch flies or moths attracted by the light. Occasionally you may get one on the wall inside your hotel room or apartment, although this is not that common. If you do then just leave a door or window open and they will find their way out.
They are completely harmless creatures. Please don’t try and pick one up as they may drop their tail in the panic to get away (a survival technique) and, although it will regrow, it takes much of their energy to do it.
You will probably see lizards in gardens or among rocks in much of the island. Even if you don’t see them you may well hear them as they scamper away to safety as you walk by. They are never very large and are completely harmless (unless you are a fly of course). If you see any among the rocks of a stone circle when you are lying in one on the beach, and you have something like an apple or orange with you then put a piece on the rocks for them. They will be grateful for the moisture.
I occasionally see a praying mantis on the rocks in my garden and have seen a few on the rocks of one of the stone sun-bathing circles on the beaches. They are harmless creatures and quite fascinating to watch with the slow, jerky movements.