August 30, 2007

Hi there,

I visit friends in the Northeast of Brazil regularly, and have always wondered why I never see screens on windows or doors. Air-conditioned rooms are sealed off, but homes without A/C have unscreened windows and insects come and go as they please.

Where I live, screens on windows are practically universal even though the summer is only two months long and there is no malaria or dengue. I know tropical homes are designed to be more open to the outdoors, but wouldn’t having screens on windows at least in bedrooms protect from insects while allowing air to blow?

I wonder if screens on windows are used in São Paulo or other parts of Brazil I haven’t visited?


Hi David,

I don’t think there is a reason for that since screens aren’t even expensive. Maybe they don’t care about insects so much, maybe they’ve got used to them. But listen, we all agree it would help to have it. On the other hand I will have to disagree with you that screens allow the air to blow. They don’t, David, specially when it’s too warm and ‘not’ windy at all.

Do you think this might be a reason?

If you have an opportunity ask one of your friends and please tell us.

Vanessa T. Bauer.

Readers Comments:

In regards to this article, I was all over SE Brazil, never had any screens anywhere, and never had any problems with bugs. I never got bit, was never molested by them. It was like they didn’t exist. That was Jan. – Mar. so maybe they come out later, but I was happy. Of course the whole time I had the strongest urge to put in a screen since I expected to see some nasty bug any minute. It just never happened.

— Jon

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