city
header-logotype
7AM - MIDNIGHT | 7/365
BOOK NOW

Head Lice In The Trees? - NO!

Head Lice In The Trees? - NO!
Created on 
January 21, 2020
Updated on 
June 25, 2020

Last autumn my family was fortunate enough to be able to go on a bayou swamp tour in Louisiana. On a gorgeous cool but sunny day we boarded a flat bottomed boat with about a dozen other people and embarked upon a lazy two hour cruise through the cypress and gum trees.

alligator sunning in the duckweed swamp.

Our guide was a native of the region with a distinctive mixture of southern drawl and Cajun patois. He narrated our journey with various tidbits, factoids and myths associated with the swamps. We learned that a “bayou” is actually a slow moving river while a swamp is a wetland with trees. 

painted turtles huddled on stump in swamp.jpg

It was a glorious perfect day. We saw so many beautiful, exotic, mysterious and even creepy flora and fauna.

Great white egret.
  • ✓    Alligators – check.
  • ✓    Great White Egret – check.
  • ✓    Bald Eagles – check.
  • ✓    Duckweed – check.
  • ✓    Cypress trees – check.
  • ✓    Spanish moss – check.
bald eagle perched on dead branch.
  • ✓    Lice – cheeecck…. Wait, what?!??

Yep. You heard that right. Our guide cautioned us that we should not get tooooo close to the ubiquitous beautiful draping moss because it housed – you guessed it, LICE! Now He was charming and this was obviously part of his schtick and patter to wow and awe his tour groups, I also didn’t want to diminish anyone’s enjoyment of their excursion, so I kept my lice expertise to myself. But he was quite wrong. Human head lice need HUMANS to survive, so unless there were some truly squirrelly folks living in the trees, there could not be head lice living in the trees either! 

Bayou swamp Cypress trees with Spanish moss



When I got home I had to Google it because I couldn’t imagine what could possibly spawn such a myth. It turns out that chiggers (tiny little red biting bugs that do NOT set up camp and live on human hosts) occasionally live in Spanish Moss and for ages have been misidentified as lice by generations of folks in the southern US. So. For the record. If you should find yourself floating through a swamp, rest assured you cannot get head lice from the beautiful drooping Spanish Moss.
If you do find yourself with head lice from a normal source, like hugs from a loved one, call LiceDoctors in New Orleans and all of Louisiana at  504-521-7573

Bayou swamp tour Spanish Moss.

We provide a friendly in-home lice removal service

Book your appointment today

RECOMMENDED POSTS

The Hidden Costs of DIY Lice Treatment
Updated on 
December 4, 2022

The Hidden Costs of DIY Lice Treatment

DIY lice treatment cost might surprise you. Find out the hidden costs of at home lice treatments and the difference between DIY and professional lice removal.

Read more
Honolulu School Lice Policy
Updated on 
December 4, 2022

Honolulu School Lice Policy

Schools in general send children home until they are lice and nit-free. As reported on the Hawaiian government site, "Should a person with head lice stay away from work or school?

Read more
Overland Park Kansas School Head Lice Policy
Updated on 
December 4, 2022

Overland Park Kansas School Head Lice Policy

Per the Kansas Department of Education website, it is recommended that Kansas schools drop “no nit” policies, which prohibit children with lice eggs from entering school. The recommendation is based on advice from the Centers for Disease Control, American Association of Pediatrics, and the National Association of School Nurses.

Read more
Cart
0