401 Webbs Mills Road, Raymond, Maine 04071 - Tel: 207-655-4742 Fax: 207-655-3024


Panther Pond is located in the more populous southern part of Maine. If you forget your sunscreen or your bug dope (insect repellent) there are plenty of supermarkets, convenience and specialty stores, and pharmacies where you can restock. But why waste valuable vacation time on that? It's better to remember them when you're packing. In any case, you don't want to be without. Here are a few ideas to help you have a healthy and happy visit:


Sunscreen: The sun is strong enough here in the summer to give you a good burn, so be sure to gob on the goo. (In the ice-fishing season, and even in the fall foliage season, most people won't have any problems.)


Bug dope: You may have heard some of the legends about the Maine blackflies, like how they interfere with airplane traffic, carry off pickup trucks, and collect more blood than the Red Cross. Well, that may be true 100 miles north of here, but at Panther they're really just a minor spring-time nuisance. (Sometimes they're enough of a nuisance that you might want the bug dope or a head net, though.)


Of more concern are the mosquitoes. Not that they're any more numerous or vicious than the blackflies, but they can carry a couple of nasty diseases, West Nile Virus and Eastern Equine Encephalitis. Thankfully, the incidence of both diseases is still quite low, and the few cases that do occur are mostly mild. But, in a few rare instances, they can be serious. Mosquitoes are most active around sunrise and sunset, so, as the day draws to a close, put on long clothes and an insect repellent containing DEET. Better yet, stay inside, have a glass of wine by the fireplace, and plan the next day's adventures.


Maine has a large population of white-tailed deer, and where there are deer, there will be deer ticks. Some of these ticks carry Lyme disease, which you'd really rather not have. So, if you're venturing into the woods and fields in the spring or early summer, take the usual precautions: wear light-colored clothing (because the ticks show up better that way); tuck your pants into your socks (becuase the ticks like to climb, and that keeps them on the outside); and spray your pants and socks with a DEET-based repellent. ( See here for a helpful wardrobe tip.) Deer ticks are much smaller than the common dog ticks, and they may be hard to see until they've had a good meal of your blood. So - here's the fun part - team up with a loved one and do a daily mutual strip-search. If you remove any ticks within 24 hours, they likely won't have time to spread the disease.


Relax - we just include these health messages for the sake of completeness. It's not as bad as it sounds. After all, some of us live here all year round, and we're still kickin'. Remember, there are just as many threats to your health in Central Park as there are in the Maine woods. In either place, you just have to know how to take care of yourself.


And on a cheerier note - be advised that Maine has NO indigenous poisonous snakes. (At least, not until climate change drives them up here from the lower 47.)



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