Opinion

Poll: Have you gotten the infamous mite bite in Alexandria?

After being first reported at ARLnow, oak mite itches have become a notorious regional phenomena.

The mites are particularly prevalent this year because of the Brood X cicada reemergence. The microscopic bugs feed on cicada eggs. They’re nearly invisible and often fall from trees where cicada nymphs have been hatching.

Half-a-day after the initial bite, red bumps emerge that inflame the skin around it. Over-the-counter itch creams aren’t particularly effective and bug spray does little to keep the mites away.

Though it’s not possible to entirely avoid the mites — the wind carries them far from the trees where they fall — it “mite” be advisable to avoid oak trees for the time being.