People of this race constitute a chief element in the mixed population of the “Mosquito Coast,” known as Moscos.
So confident were the authorities that the mosquito was the sole cause of the disease spreading, that besides fighting it no other work was undertaken save to make the sick as comfortable as possible. Finally the results began to be apparent. The number of cases gradually diminished, until long before frost came the city was free from the great pest.
Streams with floating ice made fording difficult, especially Mosquito Creek; but our driver and Simon measured the depth of water, and with rails pushed the floating ice from the ford, to enable me to drive through.
They were sunburnt, spotted with mosquito bites, and had had little luck, the river being full of nets and the fjord of seals, between which the best of the salmon are either caught or devoured; but they spoke of their experience with true English relish. "Oh, it was very jolly!" said one: "we were so awfully bitten by mosquitoes.
Her dress was some sort of mosquito netting with wall-paper posies on it, and there was more ribbons flapping than there is reef-p'ints on a mainsail. And her hat! Great guns! It looked like one of them pictures you see in a flower-seed catalogue. "Oh!" she squeals, when she sees the buggy. "Oh! Mr. Cobb. Ain't you afraid to go in that open carriage? It looks to me like rain."
Most people consider such work innocent and amusing, but it may easily be made more. Take the question of the antennas of insects. It took the combined experiments of a German and an American to discover that the plumed antennæ of the male mosquito vibrated differently to different parts of the female's song, thus representing an outward ear.
"Pennyroyal extract," said Molly, "perfectly fine for mosquito bites, bruises, cuts, scarlet fever, colds, coughs, or measles." The young lady seemed to think it very amusing, and sitting down on the top step, began to laugh. "It must be, indeed, handy to have in the house," she said; "where did you get it?" The girls were dismayed.
"Allie's gone out to the old farm to get some stuff for Ma," the father explained in due time. "Some pitchers of her an' Buddy when they was little, an' a rockin'-chair, an' Ma's favorite bedspread, an' some other things she likes." Gray remembered the portraits, executed by a St. Louis "enlargement" concern. They had wide gilt frames, and were protected from ravaging flies by mosquito netting.
By the first article Great Britain and the United States bound themselves never to obtain or maintain any exclusive control over the said ship canal; never to erect or maintain any fortifications commanding the same or in the vicinity thereof, or to colonize or exercise dominion over Nicaragua, Costa Rica, the Mosquito coast, or any part of Central America; and never to make use of any alliance, connection or influence with any of these states to obtain any unequal advantages in regard to commerce or navigation through the said canal.
When the young female mosquito emerges from the water, she lays her eggs in the way described, and her offspring following in time her example, several broods are raised in a single season. Many of the old ones die off; but a sufficient number hybernate under the bark of trees and in dwelling-houses, to perpetuate the species in the early spring months of the following year.