What Repels Horse Flies? (Question)

1) Bug Spray – Picaridin has been said to effectively ward off horse-flies. You can try Deet as well, which can help repel mosquitoes too.

What is the best repellent for horse flies?

  • Pyranha Wipe N Spray. Pyranha Wipe N Spray is a product that we would love to recommend to you.
  • Farnam Dual Defense Insect Repellent for Horse and Rider. The next product that we want to introduce to you is this bug repellent from Farnam.
  • Stat!
  • Farnam Repel-X pe Emulsafiable Fly Spray for Horses.
  • Absorbine UltraShield EX Fly Spray.

What smells do horse flies hate?

Look for other ingredients in sprays — or make your own with natural oils — that are believed to be offensive to horse flies. These include peppermint, eucalyptus, lavender, clove, rosemary, basil, tea tree, lemongrass, catnip and cedar.

Does anything repel horse flies?

Repellents containing DEET, citronella, or geraniol are effective against horse flies. Using a repellent along with wearing long sleeves and long pants is the most effective way to prevent horse fly bites when you spend time outside.

What is a natural repellent for horse flies?

Basic Recipe Make a homemade horsefly repellent by mixing a pint of white vinegar with 2 ounces baby oil and a squirt of dish soap in a spray bottle. Apply to skin or clothing when outdoors near areas of horsefly activity.

What is a home remedy to get rid of horse flies?

To make a dish soap spray, take an empty spray bottle and add 4 tablespoons of dish soap, 2 cups of white vinegar to it, then add 1 cup of warm water, shake the mixture and your dish soap spray is ready. Spray it on horse flies and watch them dying instantly.

Does Vicks keep flies away?

The smell of the menthol in it will repel the insects away.

Does cinnamon repel horse flies?

Natural Repellents You can make natural insect repellents by using water; an emulsifier; and essential oils like citronella, eucalyptus, cedar wood, geranium or cinnamon oils, which have a strong natural smell that masks the mammal’s smell and thus keep horseflies away.

Does garlic repel horse flies?

Many horse owners feed an equine garlic supplement for its insect repelling qualities. The sweat produced by a horse fed on garlic gives out an odour that keeps flies, ticks and midges away, making it a natural fly repellent.

Will citronella repel horse flies?

The smoke and scent released from the citronella oil can help keep horse flies away.

Why do horseflies chase you?

Horseflies bite to ingest blood which is rich in protein. The protein is needed to develop their fertilized eggs. And yes, horseflies will chase you down to get their meal.

Does DEET repel horse flies?

A fact sheet written by Lee Townsend, extension entomologist University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, states that manmade chemical repellents such as DEET “can provide several hours of protection” from deer flies and horse flies.

What are horseflies attracted to?

These flies apparently are attracted to such things as movement, shiny surfaces, carbon dioxide, and warmth. Once on a host, they use their knife-like mouthparts to slice the skin and feed on the blood pool that is created.

Does vinegar repel horse flies?

Vinegar. The smell of vinegar repels horseflies. Apple Cider Vinegar is a natural product created from fermented apple juice. One of the ways a horse fly finds its victim is through smell, so an effective spray needs to mask the horses’ scent.

Does vinegar repel flies on horses?

From acting as an area repellent to being placed directly on horses, vinegar is a good home-made solution for helping keep your horses fly-free. Use vinegar in home-made fly bait mixes. Many fly traps use fly bait. You can make your own by adding 2 cups of water and ½ cup of sugar to ½ cup of vinegar.

How to Keep Horse Flies Away from Your Yard

Horse flies are well-known for their painful bites, which are caused by their scissor-like jaws. Female horse flies, like female mosquitoes, are attracted to your blood because it provides them with nutrition. (Male horse flies are attracted to nectar mostly.) A horse fly bite, on the other hand, will result in a loud “ouch!” unlike a mosquito bite, which may not be recognized until it begins to itch. If you have a problem with horse flies in your yard, follow these guidelines to help protect yourself, your family, and your pets (or livestock).

What Do Horse Flies Look Like?

As one of the biggest flies on the planet, they are reasonably easy to detect, yet they can be tough to thwart due to their size. In order to establish whether or not you have horse flies, look for the following features. Horse flies have extremely huge and robust bodies that range in length from 3-4 inches to 1-14 inches. A variety of colors are available, ranging from dark brown to grey to black. Their eyes are huge and can be either green or black in color.

Maintain Your Yard

Because horse flies like moist regions and hot temperatures, they can be seen in large numbers in pasturelands near creeks throughout the summer months. They prefer weedy patches and tall grass around dwellings because they can retain moisture and help to reproduce the humid pasture habitat that they adore so much. Horse flies may also be a nuisance for folks who spend their time at the beach or at the local pool.

Remove Garbage

Horse flies, like other fly species, will concentrate their efforts on waste in search of food. The lids of outdoor garbage cans should have a tight fit. Keeping your garbage in your garage may help to reduce the number of flies that fly over your yard.

Clean Up after Pets

Horse flies, like many other insects, are drawn to the excrement of domesticated animals. The summer months will necessitate more regular yard cleanups if you have a canine companion, otherwise you may find yourself with a horse fly infestation on your hands.

Burn CandlesTorches

If you’re hosting a backyard BBQ or other outdoor celebration, burning citronella candles and lighting torches will help keep horse flies away from your guests and prevent them from attacking them. Horse flies are attracted to the smoke and aroma created by citronella oil, so using it can help keep them away.

Kill and Prevent Horse Flies

Everyone is confronted with the same problem at the end of every winter season and the beginning of every summer season: insects and vermin. These insects are not only distressing to people, but they are also distressing to pets, particularly horses, who are particularly vulnerable. What should you do if you find yourself in a tight spot and require a homemade fly repellent spray? Continue reading to learn about three delicious recipes. In the case of horses, flies, in particular, are a well-known and noxious source of irritation.

  • As a result, as horse owners, we understand how critical it is to protect our horses’ skin by applying insect repellents to their coats and legs.
  • So let’s get this party started.
  • The first recipe is a straightforward one-ingredient dish.
  • It may not be as as impressive as store-bought horsefly sprays, but it is really effective nonetheless.
  • Simply pour the solution into a spray bottle and you’re done.

The important thing to know about ACV is that the less of it you have in your horsefly repellent, the more frequently you need reapply it. This next horsefly repellent would need a bit more time and effort on your part in order to locate and combine the following ingredients:

  • 2 cups apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon mineral oil or any other liquid oil
  • 12 tablespoons liquid dish soap
  • 2 cups water Thirty-to-forty drops of any or a mixture of the following essential oils: lemongrass, lavender, cedarwood, tea tree, eucalyptus (including citronella), peppermint, basil, and rosemary
  • A spray bottle that is appropriate

All of the components should be combined in the spray container and thoroughly shaken before using to create your horsefly repellent. Even if the lasthorsefly repellentrecipe is a little out of the usual, it works just as effectively. In order to make this recipe, you would need to combine around four parts of any grain alcohol or even water with one component lavender essential oil. Although this is not as effective with the alcohol combination, it does work better because as the alcohol evaporates, the aroma of the oil remains to protect your horse.

However, while we highly suggest theHappy Horse brand horsefly repellant and horsefly sprays, we understand that you may occasionally run out of supplies, therefore we hope you found some of the Horse Fly Home Remedies to be helpful.

Reader Interactions

Photographs courtesy of IHemera Technologies/PhotoObjects.net/Getty Images Horse flies are merciless in their treatment of horses and other animals, including people. Horse flies appear to despise Avon’s Skin-So-Soft bath oil, which was discovered by accident but has been around for a long time. Another option is vinegar, either white or apple cider vinegar. Each is non-toxic to animals or humans; simply pour into spray bottles and use as needed. It is possible to purchase ready-made sprays containing citronella, which is also a repellent, as well as shampoo specifically designed for animals.

Smells We Like, They Don’t

Look for other components in sprays – or manufacture your own with natural oils – that are supposed to be repulsive to horse flies. Horse flies are known to be attracted to certain scents. Peppermint, eucalyptus, lavender, clove, rosemary, basil, tea tree, lemongrass, catnip, and cedar are just a few of the herbs used. Many individuals enjoy some or all of these smells, which makes it more comfortable for you to employ them in your home.

Prevention Is Best

To keep breeding sites under control, remove any standing water and follow excellent manure removal methods. ReferencesResources Photographic Credits Writer Karen S. Johnson’s bio Karen S. Johnson is a marketing expert with more than 30 years of experience who specializes in business and equestrian issues. She is based in Central Texas. Many of her writings have appeared in trade and business media, such as the Houston Chronicle, and she continues to write. Also for the United States Agency for International Development, Johnson co-authored a series of communications papers with a co-author.

How to Get Rid of Horse Flies – Facts & Control Techniques

Horse flies are one of the most vicious species of insects on the planet. Horse flies, in contrast to normal house flies, have mouth parts that are capable of cutting and tearing. Horse flies (especially female horse flies) are a nuisance to livestock because they settle on the bodies of cattle and bite them in order to take their blood. In addition, unlike mosquito bites, the horse fly bite is extremely painful. They have jaws that are similar to scissor-like and are capable of tearing flesh.

In order to better understand how to get rid of horse flies, let us first examine their physical characteristics in order to recognize them more readily.

Identifying a Horse Fly:

Horse flies have a yellowish-brown or blackish coloration to their wings and bodies. It is around 20 to 25 mm long, has a large head, and has hairs all over its body. They are remarkably similar to honey bees, with the exception of the fact that they only have one set of wings. The undersides of the wings are coated with subtle smoky patches. The eyes of a Horse fly are exquisitely colored with rich metallic color tones that shimmer in the light. Females have complex eyes that are dichoptic (separated), whereas males have holloptic (continuous) eyes.

  1. Horse flies are most commonly found in low-lying meadows near creeks, streams, and tanks, where they breed and reproduce.
  2. Female species feed on the blood of animals, whilst their male counterparts are pollen gatherers.
  3. Take a look at this article: How Do You Attract Flies Into Your Home Or Surrounding Environment?
  4. Female horse flies require a blood meal before they can lay eggs because it supplies them with the appropriate levels of protein they require to reproduce successfully.
  5. Evolution: Eggs are placed on or under gravels or plants, generally close to a water supply, and hatch after about a month.
  6. Furthermore, at this period, they graze on little insects or responses.
  7. During the larval stage, which can last up to a year, the larvae burrow into the earth and begin the process of pupation.
  8. Adult flies emerge from the puparium around 3-10 weeks after hatching.
  • Getting bitten by a horse fly is quite unpleasant
  • They are carriers of illnesses such as leucocytozoan
  • They cause animals to lose weight
  • And they cause livestock to die. Horse flies have also been linked to the transmission of illnesses such as anaplasmosis, hog cholera, tularemia, and anthrax, among others.

Few Interesting Facts about Horse Flies:

  • The horse fly is a member of the ‘tabanidae’ family, and it is one of the biggest insects on the planet. Horse flies may be found all over the planet, with the exception of the extreme northern and southern latitudes. Horse flies are found in over 3,000 different species around the world. The female horse fly’s mouth parts have the appearance of saw blades. It makes a hole in the skin in order to feed on the blood that is drained from the wound. Male horse flies do not bite since they do not have biting mouth parts, and as a result, they feed on nectar collected from flowers. It takes a year for a horse fly larva to mature into an adult. In addition, an adult horse fly only lives for a few days. Horseflies are known by a variety of names in different parts of the world
  • For example, in Canada, they are known as “bull dog flies,” while in Australia, they are known as “March flies.”

How to Get Rid of Horse Flies:

Let’s have a look at how to get rid of horse flies now that we’ve learnt so much about them. You may learn how to regulate them in this area, which includes a number of suggestions.

1. Using Disposable Fly Traps:

Horse flies are easily captured with disposable fly traps, which are one of the most effective ways available. Unlike traditional traps, these ones contain an attractant that is triggered by sunshine and water. As soon as the attractant is engaged, it attracts the horse flies to enter the trap, where they are imprisoned after the flies have entered the trap. All you have to do to use these traps is unpack them, add bait/attractant along with a little water, and hang them up. These traps are a safe and effective technique to control horseflies, including those that are pesticide resistant.

These traps are particularly effective since a single trap may capture up to 20,000 flying insects and can be used for several weeks at a time. Check out this one on Amazon, which has received a lot of excellent feedback. Reading Material Suggestions: Fly traps that are disposable

2. Using a homemade Fly Trap against Horse Flies:

As I previously stated, horse flies are drawn to dark moving things; thus, we will utilize this knowledge to our advantage and construct a trap that will attract horse flies and kill them. To construct this trap, we will need the following materials:

  • A difficult string to work with
  • A medium-sized ball with a dark color and a round shape
  • A fly paper (either commercially available or handmade)
  • A stool, to be precise.

To construct the trap, tie the dark colored ball to the string and secure the free end of the string to the bottom of the stool. After that, wrap the fly paper over the stool’s legs and secure it in place. Once you’ve done that, hang the stool in the area where the horse fly infestation is prevalent. Every few hours, simply press the ball to the point where it begins to sway in the breeze. The horse flies will be attracted to the dark colored ball because of its swinging action. When they approach close to the trap, they attempt to land on it and become entangled in the fly paper.

3. Coke Bottle Trap made with Rotten Meat:

This is a pretty easy trap that has worked for a large number of individuals. So, all you need is the following to do this:

  • A Coca-Cola bottle that has been emptied
  • To cut the bottle, you’ll need a sharp knife or a pair of scissors. Use a drill or any other sharp tool to make some holes in the ground
  • Cellophane tape is a type of adhesive used to seal packages. rotting meat weighing 50-100 grams

To construct this trap, begin by slicing the coke bottle with a knife, as illustrated in the accompanying illustration. Following that, drill a 1 cm hole in the bottle cap in the manner illustrated. After that, place the decaying meat pieces in the lower portion of the bottle with a little water in it. Then, as illustrated, flip the upper section upside down. Cellophane tape is used to ensure that the edges are firmly secured. Place these traps in close proximity to the contaminated area (away from your cattle).

Moreover, once they have entered the bottle, it will be impossible for them to get out on their own.

This is supported by research.

4. Sticky Fly Paper Trap with Odour Baits:

Many individuals have had success in reducing horse flies by employing huge sticky fly traps in conjunction with an attractant or other attractant. It has also been demonstrated that when normal fly paper traps are used in conjunction with scent baits, the effectiveness of the traps rises dramatically. To make this work, you will first need a large sticky fly paper trap, which you may use in conjunction with smell baits if you choose. You might use any of the following ingredients to make odor baits:

  • The presence of carbon dioxide (CO 2) in bovine breath attracts horse flies, which are drawn to carbon dioxide in general. To attract them, you might use a CO2 cylinder or ‘dry ice’ to catch their attention. However, in order to make this function under real-world field settings, enormous volumes of CO2 gas would be required. Acrylatone (Nail Polish or Varnish Remover)– Acrylatone is also a component of cow breath, which means that many species of horse flies are drawn to this liquid to a substantial degree. One of the constituents of cattle sweat, octen-3-ol, is a fly attractant to a modest amount. It is a component of human sweat, as well as a component of cow sweat. Due to the fact that octenol is a highly expensive chemical, it is exclusively employed in laboratory research against horse flies
  • However, this is changing. Ammonia (NH3 vapour)– Ammonia is a component of bovine urine, and it has been seen to attract some species of tabanids
  • It is also a component of feces. It was cow urine that was discovered to attract horseflies, and it had to be matured for at least a week before it could be used. Furthermore, because it is readily available and very simple to administer, it is a popular attractant, particularly among cattle ranchers.
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5. Umbrella Type Horse Fly Trap:

The use of an umbrella trap has been shown to be quite successful against horse flies. You will need the following things to complete this project:

  • Sheets of plastic sheeting or plastic screening (four sheets) 5 feet in length and 4 feet in width
  • A stapler or a glue stick A pole that is 5 or 6 feet in length
  • A jar made of plastic
  • A black plastic or rubber ball with a diameter ranging from 16 to 20 inches

The four pieces of plastic sheeting should be joined together using stitching or staples to form a pyramid shape, as indicated in the figure below. The pyramid should be around 4 feet high and 3 feet broad along each of its four bases, depending on the size of the materials used. Following that, a ring should be placed to each bottom corner of the trap in order to attach guy lines that keep the trap in place. After that, join the 6 foot pole in the center of the pyramid along with the rest of the pyramid.

It is important that after the trap is properly assembled, the ball should rest slightly below the plastic sheets.

Fix the jar lid upside down and use a 2 inch hole punch to make a 2 inch hole in both the lid and the cardboard plate.

This jar will be used to collect flies, which will be placed inside.

After that, secure the guy lines to some supporting poles so that they may act as tent ropes to hold the canopy in place. And the horsefly trap is now ready to grab its prey.

6. Manning Trap for Horse Flies:

The Manning trap operates on the same principle, namely, luring flies with a dark moving item and then catching them in a container after they are attracted. A conventional manned trap looks much like the one seen above. Please keep in mind that there are many various methods to design a manned trap, and I have just illustrated the most basic one here for illustration purposes. In addition to manning traps, horse buddy traps and H-Traps are modified versions of the manning trap. To construct a manning trap, you would need the following materials:

  • The following items: a tripod stand or sufficient wood to construct your own stand
  • A sheet of plastic or a fabric
  • An opaque ball of black color
  • A little funnel
  • A piece of string
  • A bottle of anything

First and foremost, if you don’t already have one, construct a tripod stand of 5 feet in length. After that, drill a 3 – 5 cm hole into the top of the tripod and screw the funnel into place over the hole. Afterwards, attach the bottle to this in the manner depicted in the figure above. To attach the bottle to the funnel, you can use cellophane tape if necessary; however, make sure the bottle is securely fastened to the funnel before proceeding. The dark colored ball should be connected to the string, which should be tied to the bottom of the tripod so that it hangs at least 2 feet over the tripod legs.

As a result of this, you should maintain the trap close to the contaminated region and you should soon see that the bottle is full with dead horseflies.

7. Homemade Repellents for Horse Flies:

Several natural oils have been shown to repel horseflies, and you might use them to make a repellant for yourself or your pets if you know what you’re doing. Repellent number one: To produce this repellant, combine the ingredients in the following order and keep them in a container.

  • 1-1/2-cup Avon Skin So Soft (Bath oil)
  • 1/2-cup water
  • 1/2-tablespoon eucalyptus oil
  • 1 cup white vinegar

You may apply the repellant straight to the skin of your dogs if you so desired. Please with your veterinarian before using this product. Repellent number two: To produce this repellant, combine the ingredients in the following order and keep them in a container.

  • Light mineral oil, 1/4 cup lemon juice, 1 teaspoon citronella oil, 1 teaspoon eucalyptus essential oil, and 1 teaspoon lemon dish soap are all you need.

You may apply the repellant straight to the skin of your dogs if you so desired. Please with your veterinarian before using this product. Repellent number three: To produce this repellant, combine the ingredients in the following order and keep them in a container.

  • 3 components: 1 part lavender oil, 2 parts water, 2 parts rubbing alcohol

You may apply the repellant straight to the skin of your dogs if you so desired. Please with your veterinarian before using this product. Read this article for more information: Natural oils to repel flies.

8. Using Insecticides:

Although it is theoretically feasible to kill horse fly larvae using pesticides, doing so would result in the water being harmful or contaminated due to the fact that they reside near streams or rivers. As a result, treating them when they are in the larval stage is very impossible. Field experiments, on the other hand, have demonstrated that daily treatment of cattle with a naturally occurring pesticide known as’synergized pyrethrins’reduces the bite rates by horse flies while having no negative effects on the cattle themselves.

Concentrated pyrethrins pesticide may be purchased from any farm supply or agricultural chemical company.

For example, if you want to treat horses, you should choose a formulation that has been labeled particularly for this kind of animal.

The cattle must be treated with the pesticide on a regular basis in order to achieve the optimum effects. However, by spraying it on every other day, it is possible to attain some kind of control. Use a sponge to apply the pesticide to the cattle if you don’t want to spray it directly on them.

9. Using Dish Soap and Vinegar Spray to kill Horse Flies:

When it comes to flies, dish soap is quite efficient against most breeds, including horse flies. It is beneficial to use a dish soap that contains borax, which is an insecticide; the greatest thing about using a dish detergent that contains borax is that it has no negative effects on you or your animals. For a dish soap spray, take an empty spray bottle and fill it with 4 teaspoons dish soap, 2 cups white vinegar, and 1 cup warm water, shaking the entire time. Your dish soap spray is now complete.

10. Commercially available Horse Fly Repellents:

I’ve seen numerous products that claim to be effective against horse flies, but the most of them are ineffective. However, there are a few products that are very effective in combating them. These are the products:

  • Rtu Equisect Botanical Fly Repellent Rtu Spray– This is a natural fly spray that repels 5 different types of flies, including horse flies. It is available in a variety of scents. Check out the book on Amazon
  • Pyranha Wipe N Spray– This insect repellent includes pyrethrin (which is believed to be the safest pesticide available) and is effective against horse flies and other biting insects. Check out the book on Amazon

Please remember to consult your veterinarian before using any of these items. Read this article for more information: Natural oils to repel flies.

Prevention Tips against Horse Flies:

  • Maintain the cleanliness of your animals. Maintain a clean barn at least twice a week by cleaning out the waste and spilt feed. Aside from that, you might apply pesticides on the dung heaps, which would prevent the larvae from forming. Ensure that there is no standing water in the shed and that you have a sufficient drainage system in place so that there is no stagnant water where the horse flies may lay their eggs. It is necessary to trim the grass and weeds in order to make the environment unsuitable for horse flies. The use of a strong fan in animal sheds can greatly reduce the number of horse flies that enter the facility. Use ear nets, face masks, and repellant tags on your animals to protect them from predators. On Amazon, you may get face masks with ear nets
  • They are reasonably priced.

Recommended Reading: How to Get Rid of House Flies

Horse Fly Bite Symptoms:

Horse fly bites are quite uncomfortable. The following is a list of signs and symptoms that might help you determine if a wound is caused by a horsefly bite or not:

  • A horsefly bite results in thick, red skin that is difficult to remove. Itchy skin accompanied with pain
  • Early signs and symptoms of bacterial infections
  • Sometimes the skin remains red and inflamed for several days after the incident. Some people may develop a skin rash, hives, or wheezing as a result of the allergy
  • Others may not. Swelling around the eyes and lips is another symptom that some people encounter.

How to Treat a Horse Fly Bite:

It is extremely vital to treat a horsefly bite as soon as possible. To cure a bite, follow the instructions outlined below: Disinfect the area: To begin, thoroughly wash the area with soap and water to remove any remaining contaminants. You might also use a disinfectant that is based on alcohol or vinegar. If you are outside and unable to sterilize the area at that moment, cover the wound with saliva until you can disinfect the region. Saliva includes the protein Histatin, which has healing properties, and this will help you to heal the bite until you can get indoors and properly treat the situation.

  • Medications for Allergies: If the itch is becoming intolerable, you might try using a hydrocortisone cream directly to the wound.
  • Monitor the Wound: Keep an eye on the wound since there is a potential that it can get infected with germs.
  • So that was the end of it.
  • Also, I’d be interested in knowing if you have any other top-secret strategies for getting rid of horse flies.

Horse Flies

(News story for the 28th of May, 2020.) Horse flies have been driving you insane lately, haven’t they? This week, I had a few phone calls from concerned people who wanted to know more about horse flies and what they might do to avoid them. We haven’t even finished dealing with the assault of buffalo gnats, and now horse flies are consuming the lives of people. Although there is nothing you can do to limit the number of horse flies in your region, there are certain repellents you may use that may make your life a little easier.

  1. Horse flies are more common than deer flies in the United States.
  2. Adults have a life span of 30-60 days, and in order to create viable eggs, the females must ingest a meal of blood.
  3. Male flies do not bite, whereas female flies do bite.
  4. They enjoy aquatic plants, and their populations tend to be more numerous in damp and forested environments.
  5. They will lay in wait in shady regions until a host walks by, at which point they will administer a severe bite and consume their prey’s blood.
  6. Horse flies are effectively deterred by insect repellents containing DEET, citronella, or geraniol.
  7. Find a permethrin-based clothing treatment in the camping area of your local shop that will keep horse flies, ticks, mosquitoes, and other insect pests away from you and your belongings.

Animals will benefit from the use of pyrethroid insecticide pour ons, ear tags, and collars on their backs.

The two hours before sunset and the two hours immediately after sunset are also high-activity times.

They are native to North America and thrive in our moderate temperature and forested, damp places, which they find to be particularly appealing.

Wishing you the best of luck!

M., ed (1998, February).

The date was May 5, 2020, and the source was Jessie Hoover works as a County Agent at the LSU AgCenter, where she is responsible for horticulture in the parishes of East Feliciana, West Feliciana, St.

More information on these or related topics can be obtained by contacting Jessie at 225-683-3101 or by visiting the website www.lsuagcenter.com.

‘American horse fly’ is a term used to describe a flying horse in the United States. The image is courtesy of Sturgis McKeever, Georgia Southern University, and Bugwood.org.

Homemade Horsefly Repellent

Horseflies may be a nuisance to both animals and people. Swimming pools or ponds of shimmering water in the landscape are what a horsefly is drawn to since they are larger than a conventional housefly. Its bite is not to be taken lightly, and it may sting. Avoid dealing with these obnoxious annoyances by repelling them using basic items found around the house or purchased at a nearby drugstore. Using a homemade repellent is safe for both people and pets, and it will remain effective for as long as the fragrance is still detectable.

Basic Recipe

Using a spray bottle, combine a pint of white vinegar, 2 ounces of baby oil, and a few drops of dish detergent to create a horsefly repellent that will last for weeks. When you’re out in the fresh air in regions where horseflies are active, apply this product to your skin or clothing.

Essential Oils

Because certain essential oils contain fly-repelling characteristics, they help to give the DIY repellent formula a competitive advantage. Add 5 to 10 drops of eucalyptus or tea tree oil to the basic spray formula for a highly efficient repellent that also keeps other flies away from your home. You may also use citronella essential oil to repel mosquitoes instead of a scented torch oil, which is more effective in this case.

Five Ways to Help Repel Deer and Horse Flies

Even while Deer and Horse Flies might be irritating, they should never be allowed to destroy our outdoor enjoyment! Instead, here are five simple steps you can do to help keep bugs out of your environment and enjoy the great outdoors without getting bitten.

1.Insect Protection Spray

Although using excellent insect repellent before going outside will help to keep biting flies away from you even if you do enter their domain, it is best to avoid doing so unless absolutely necessary. Try Proven Repellent if you’re looking for a repellent that works well against deer and horse flies. Furthermore, because it does not include DEET, it is the safest bug repellent for children and their beloved pet friends.

2. Keep Away

Biting flies are extremely territorial species, which means that if you come into contact with them, you’ve most likely crossed into their realm of influence. Simple measures such as putting some space between yourself and the problem location, say 10 or 15 feet, might prevent you from being disturbed by them entirely. Simply be aware that you will not be able to outrun biting flies, so don’t even bother attempting to do so. In fact, continue reading to see how doing the polar opposite of what you’re supposed to do will help keep those pests away from you.

3. Stay Still

Biting flies are drawn to movement, so any movements you make in their presence will simply draw their attention to you and make you appear all the more fascinating as a food source or a potential lethal threat. In order to avoid succumbing to the need to flee when a biting fly approaches, attempt to remain completely motionless instead of reacting. It is possible that the creature will become bored with you and will move on to other fascinating stimuli.

4. Stay Away From Water

During their larval stage, biting flies may be found in wetland areas, on the muddy borders of ponds, and on the banks of streams.

As a result, you should expect to see a large number of biting flies anywhere there is standing water. Keep the following items out of your path if you want to avoid approaching a biting-fly hotspot:

  • Ponds, lakes, rivers, streams, marshes, and standing water (such as a puddle) are all examples of bodies of water.

5. Wear a Hat

It is one of the most efficient strategies of defending yourself from biting flies to ensure that your entire body is adequately covered with clothing before venturing out into the fresh air. While wearing long sleeves on your shirts and slacks might help to keep biting flies at bay, wearing a hat on your head can be especially helpful against horse flies and deer flies, which can be particularly bothersome. What is the reason behind this? Apparently, the underside of the head is a particular attraction for biting insects like these.

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In addition, a hat with a wide brim will keep flies from congregating in the area around your ears, face, and neck, which will provide further protection.

How to Get Rid of Horse Flies and Avoid Their Bite (DIY Trap Instructions)

It should be noted that this content may contain affiliate links. This means that if you make an eligible purchase, we may receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. The most recent revision was made on February 8, 2022. While some people may think I overreact when it comes to flies, I don’t think anybody could accuse me of doing so when it comes to the horse fly. Despite the fact that they are related to common houseflies, these bugs live up to the moniker “vicious bloodsuckers.” Unfortunately, because these pests provide some environmental value and frequently nest in protected locations, it is impossible to entirely eliminate horse flies from the ecosystem.

Get a free quotation from the most reputable pest control businesses in your neighborhood.

Because the phrase “horse fly” is frequently abused, it’s always a good idea to double-check that your target is, in fact, a horse fly before investing in control tactics that may or may not be effective against other fly or insect species.

Know Your Enemy

Horse flies are a pestilence that, fortunately, only manifests itself in large numbers during a few months of the calendar year. However, although huge house flies and horse flies are sometimes referred to as one species, the latter is in fact a distinct species that is far worse than a simple insect that vomits all over your food. Females are so infamous during mating season that they are referred to as “maddening gadflies” in Shakespeare’s play Hamlet. Once you’ve determined that you’re dealing with a horse fly, it’s rather simple to get rid of them because of their hunting tactics.

What Does a Horse Fly Look Like?

The horse fly, which has been given the moniker “dun-fly” because of its subdued hues, has dull yellow patterns that mimic those of the abee.

These insects have extremely big eyes, extremely short antennae, and extremely pointed mouthparts. These flies have bodies that are broader than the usual fly, and they may grow to be as long as an inch long.

Where do Horse Flies Come From?

“From the deepest, darkest depths,” says someone who has recently been bitten in response to your question. It is believed by some scientists to be true that the horse fly likes to reproduce on wet soil near huge bodies of water, but that it is capable of traveling up to 30 kilometers. While they favor woodland areas, they can be found in practically any land-based location on the planet, with the exception of the polar regions.

What do Horse Flies Eat?

Contrary to common belief, only females consume blood, which they utilize to help in the reproduction of their young. Overall, adult horseflies prefer nectar and are really necessary for the survival of particular plants because of their nectar preference. The larvae are carnivorous and might be cannibalistic in their behavior. Even though male horse flies offer no hazard, the possibility of coming across a hungry female is sufficient justification for eliminating horse flies.

Horse Fly vs Deer Fly

Deer flies and horse flies are often confused, albeit there are several distinguishing characteristics between the two. Unlike horse flies, deer flies (which have no resemblance to deer) have black stripes across their wings as compared to the transparent wings of the horse fly. Furthermore, their bodies have a tendency to be leaner and smaller.

Horse Fly vs House Fly

Despite the fact that the horse fly and the house fly are diametrically opposed in appearance, the latter is occasionally referred to as a “horse fly” due to common nicknames. The source of this misunderstanding is from tales of some house flies as being “as large as a horse.” Despite the fact that house flies do not feed on blood, they can carry a significant quantity of germs, which can infect any food or property they come into touch with. For further information, see How to Get Rid of Cluster Flies in the House.

How to Get Rid of Horse Flies

I would normally advise against exterminating a creature, but there are no constraints and no significant environmental consequences to exterminating every horse fly you encounter. Because they frequently establish breeding grounds in protected areas, any possible environmental consequences of eradicating those who trespass into public or private land are kept to a bare minimum. The methods listed here are only a handful of the various options available for getting rid of these pests.

The Humble Horse Fly Trap

There are a variety of horse fly traps available to assist you in getting rid of horse flies. The following are some of the most effective: Do you want to leave it in the hands of the professionals? Get a free quotation from the most reputable pest control businesses in your neighborhood.

  • A bug zapper is one of the most gratifying kill traps that can be found anywhere in the globe. An unwanted insect is drawn to the light and electrocuted with a pleasing sound as a result of the attraction. The carcasses can subsequently be fed to pets or carnivorous plants as a source of nutrition. Make certain that the slats are large enough to allow a horse fly to get through. Flies-Be-Gone: A plastic bag and bait are used in this fly trap. In this case, the flies enter through a funnel and are baffled as to how to exit
  • The traditional fly paper used in houses for decades will trap horse flies as readily as normal house flies and fruit flies
  • It is inexpensive and easy to find in most grocery stores. Horse PalorH-Trap: Another commercial trap that might bring satisfaction is the Horse PalorH-Trap. Because it is designed to attract visual hunters, the horse fly will approach something that appears to be a tasty meal only to become imprisoned in a metal container that uses ordinary sunlight to slowly fry the pest to death.

Chemical Sprays

Chemical sprays that are quite safe and contain natural insecticides are available for purchase. One method is to use a regular soap spray, which may be used to suffocate most insect pests and is inexpensive. It is made up of 4 tablespoons dish soap (I like Dawn for added safety around birds, squirrels, and other garden creatures), 2 cups vinegar, and 1 cup warm water in the following proportions: Simply shake the can to combine the ingredients and spray. One advantage of using this mixture is that it is completely safe to spray plants with it.

It is derived from Chrysanthemum flowers and may be purchased in concentrated form at agricultural supply stores or on the internet, among other places.

It is non-toxic and has been shown to significantly minimize biting incidences. Make certain to get a combination that is especially designed for the animal on which you intend to spray, as various concentrations are required for different species.

DIY Corner: Two Types of Homemade Horse Fly Trap

Construction of your own traps is possible, and the results are nearly identical to those of professional ones. Container traps and sticky traps are the two basic types of traps available: both are effective.

Container Traps

With these traps, there are several variants on a subject, which is understandable. By adding some decaying meat or acetone to the inverted soda bottle traps used for house flies, you may make them work for you as well. The Manning trap, or a version of it, is the most frequently seen. The following is an example of one variant of this trap:

  1. Build a tripod stand (or utilize an existing one) that is five feet in height or higher. You may also construct a four-legged structure. Place a piece of fabric or plastic on top of the stand to protect it. A small hole should be cut in the centre of the top surface and should be covered with a little funnel. Place an upside-down plastic bottle over the mouth of the funnel and attach it with tape
  2. Attach a strong thread or twine to the underside of the tripod and a dark, medium-sized ball to the dangling end of the rope or twine. Maintain an adequate two-foot space between your cover and the ground, while yet allowing for unobstructed visibility of the ball

Image courtesy of

Sticky Traps

These are fly paper traps, as opposed to bottle traps, because they employ fly paper instead of a bottle. One simple solution is to place fly paper near a light source that is attracting flies, as seen below. One other simple sticky trap to create is a variant of the Manning trap, which makes use of a stool that is hanging from the ceiling or another sturdy surface. A black ball is hanging underneath the stool, and the legs of the stool have been loosely wrapped in fly paper in the hopes that leaving flies may become entangled.

Despite the fact that it has a limited range, getting rid of horse flies in this manner may be a lot of fun.

How to Keep Horse Flies Away

As is true in most situations, the greatest defense against horse flies is a well-planned offensive. Horse flies are not commonly seen in the home, but they like congregating near your swimming pool and other moist parts in your home. Despite the fact that you may not be able to completely eradicate horse flies’ breeding sites, you may still get rid of them by making your own area less inviting to these pests.

Defending the Home

When it comes to the house, prevention is really essential. Maintaining a clean environment can assist you in avoiding a whole slew of potential insect invaders. Horse flies are also attracted to smoke, so using candles or incense to keep them away can be effective. Citronella candles will help discourage other biting insects in addition to mosquitoes.

Defending the Pool

Unless you have cattle, your backyard pool or pond will most likely be the source of the most trouble. It will be extremely beneficial to cover these during the height of horse fly season. You should also construct light traps around the pool area to distract and kill any intruders who chose to linger around in the vicinity. Also see: How to Get Rid of Biting Midges (Part 1).

Defending Your Livestock

A brief application of pyrethrin-based insecticides on your animals once or twice every one or two days can significantly minimize the quantity of bites. Some of the most sensitive regions of the body can be protected from bites using protective covers such as ear nets and face masks. In addition, creating a protected refuge where horses and cattle may seek shelter will assist to prevent bites, provided that the doors and windows are properly screen-ed and secured.

General Outdoor Prevention

The use of general insecticides such as Off! can be effective in the control of horse flies. Wearing bright hues might also help to minimize the level of attraction you draw.

Horse flies (as well as other pests) are drawn to tall grass and rubbish, so try to keep your yard tidy and free of debris at all times. Finally, you may put up some bird feeders or suet cages to attract birds, who will also consume insects, which will help to keep the area clean.

Health Risks of Horse Flies

Females, who must extract blood in order to breed, are responsible for the vast majority of health problems. These bites are frequently associated with the transmission of pathogens and the development of allergic responses. The experience of being approached by a hungry female may be excruciatingly uncomfortable, even in the best circumstances.

Do Horse Flies Bite?

In fact, only females bite, and even then, it’s only when they’re getting ready to spawn. These bites are more painful than other types of bites, and they can result in allergic reactions as well as the transmission of bloodborne illnesses and parasites to humans and animals. Anaphylaxis in humans has been documented to occur in a few severe cases as a result of the bite in the past.

What Does a Horse Fly Bite Look Like?

Because of the way horse flies cut into the skin, the bites and symptoms of horse flies might differ from victim to victim. The bite itself will become inflamed, painful, and itchy, and it will either welt or develop into a rash as a result of the inflammation. Other symptoms, such as dizziness or wheezing, may also manifest themselves. Do you want to leave it in the hands of the professionals? Get a free quotation from the most reputable pest control businesses in your neighborhood.

Basic Treatment

You’ll want to clean and disinfect the bite as soon as possible to avoid the possibility of infection. Additionally, you can utilize first aid sprays and salves to reduce symptoms, such as After-Bite, in addition to taking any allergy drugs that may be necessary.

Effects of Horsefly Bites on Animals

Horseflies may cause a wide range of problems in animals, both because of the toxins they carry and because of the impact of the bite itself. When a large number of horse flies are feeding on a horse or cow, it can result in the transmission of anthrax, a reduction in milk supply, and even enough blood loss to cause the death of a horse or cow.

Horse Fly Repellent

  • By utilizing a mix of these articles of horse gear as well as topical treatments such as horse fly repellent, you may assist your horse avoid the irritating effects of flies and keep him comfortable. Detailed information on successful techniques of controlling the fly population on your farm may be found in How to Control Flies on a Farm. Fly blankets are made of an open weave mesh to keep pests off of the horse’s skin. Some fly sheet variants are treated with horse fly repellant to provide additional protection against horse flies. Fly masks, also known as fly bonnets, are composed of a see-through mesh that provides excellent ventilation. They prevent flies from landing in horses’ eyes and causing illnesses because they are drawn to the fluids of the eyes. Fly masks are available in a number of designs, including those that cover the ears and ones that stretch all the way to the end of the nose. The mesh used in certain fly mask types is constructed of a very fine, lightweight mesh that may be worn over bridles when riding, while others are made of a thicker, more durable mesh that can withstand the rigors of turnout and horseplay. Ear nets, also known as fly hoods or fly bonnets, are a riding accessory that some riders use to protect flies and other insects from irritating their horses’ ears while they are riding. Lace ear nets are normally constructed from crocheted yarn, however they can also be produced from crocheted yarn plus cloth. Their design is for them to be worn over a horse’s ears, with a flap that fits under the horse’s browband. An added layer of fringe around the borders helps to keep insects from getting into the horse’s eyes. Note: If you want to compete with your horse while he is wearing an ear net, make sure to verify the rules and regulations for the classes in which you will be competing first. The wearing of ear plugs may be forbidden during warm-up and schooling sessions alone. To prevent flies from landing on a horse’s legs, it is recommended that he wear fly wraps. This may also assist to lessen stomping. Fly Collar, which is wrapped with horse fly repellant and is worn around the horse’s neck and head to keep flies, mosquitoes, and gnats away from it. Gnat repellents, mosquito repellents, tick repellents, and other insect repellents are available in a variety of all-natural and synthetic formulations that not only repel flies but also gnats, mosquitoes, ticks, and other insects. Some active ingredients in horse fly repellent include organic pyrethrin obtained from the chrysanthemum plant or oils and essences that are naturally repellent to insects such as cedar, citronella, or peppermint. Organic pyrethrin obtained from the chrysanthemum plant is another common active ingredient. Alternatively, they may include permethrin, a synthetically generated insecticide that is highly effective against ticks, in an inert basis. Horse fly repellents are intended to keep flies from settling on your horse
  • However, they do not kill the insects that do land. Insecticides are chemicals that kill bugs when they come into touch with them. Some fly solutions combine the actions of both repellents and insecticides to provide a more effective solution. Dover Saddlery product consultants recommend that you test any new batch of fly spray on your horse before using it on a large scale to ensure that your horse does not have an adverse response to it. If you want your horse fly repellent to work at its best, make sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions and apply it to a clean horse as stated on the label. In addition, make sure to follow the manufacturer’s suggested application rate. Some are meant to be sweat-resistant and may be used less frequently, while others are more expensive. Apply horse fly repellent or insecticide to your horse’s face with care, wiping it on or using a targeted product such as a roll-on to prevent getting it in his eyes, as necessary. Horses become more attracted to flies as a result of their sweat, urine, and dung stains. To get the greatest benefits from your fly treatment, make sure your horse is clean before you apply it to him. It’s also a good idea to switch up the sorts of fly sprays you use from time to time since, over time, flies can develop acclimated to the fragrance of a particular spray, rendering it less effective. However, cleaning your horse in between applications of several types of fly sprays is recommended in order to avoid a response between the active chemicals in the different spray types. It’s important to note that while you’re applying fly repellents and pesticides on your horse, the overspray might kill any fly predators that are in the nearby vicinity. Perfect in every way Treatments such as Farnam Equispot and Freedom 45 are examples of this. Spot On Fly Manage products are also available for usage in order to control and kill flies and other insects that disturb horses and can spread disease to them. Due to the fact that these treatments are used less often than other topical treatments, it is important to carefully follow the manufacturer’s application guidelines. Swat is a thick cream that is blended with a natural horse fly repellent to create an effective horse fly repellent. To keep infection-causing flies away from open wounds and sensitive places such as the belly line, it is meant to be used in close proximity to these locations.
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Dual Defense – Horse Fly Repellent for Humans & Horses

Instructions on How to Use It is against the law to use this product in a manner that is inconsistent with the directions on the packaging. When applying Farnam Dual Defense Insect Repellent Horse + Rider, be sure you follow these instructions. The Horse and the Rider: While spraying, maintain a distance of 4 to 6 inches from the body and keep the nozzle aimed away from the face. With a leisurely sweeping motion, wet the skin or hair coat only a little bit. Excessive volumes of product or frequent reapplication are not required.

  • First, spritz a tiny quantity onto the palms of your hands and distribute it throughout your face and neck, being careful not to get it in your eyes.
  • For youngsters, first apply to your hands and then to the child’s skin to avoid skin irritation.
  • To apply the product to a kid’s face and neck, first apply it to your hands and then apply it to the youngster.
  • Allowing youngsters to handle the product is not recommended.
  • It is not recommended to use on skin that has been significantly burnt.

The number of applications per day should not exceed two. Horse: This product should not be used on horses destined for slaughter. Under the saddle, do not use this product. Rider: Do not apply beneath any clothes whatsoever. Use only a little amount around the ears.

Protecting Cattle From Horse Flies

Among the fly pests of cattle on Missouri pasture and range are horse flies (insect family Tabanidae), which are considered to be the most destructive (Figures 1 and 2). Although only the females “bite,” the blood-feeding activities of these huge, nimble insects can pose a major danger to the economic performance of cattle when populations are substantial. Figure 1T. equalis (equalism). The Arkansas Agricultural Experiment Station published an illustration by David G. Hall in their Bulletin 256.

  • In eastern North America, the horse fly (Tabanus atratus) is one of the most immediately recognizable and infamous of all the horse flies.
  • Known as the “blue-tailed fly” of early American folklore, this species may be found across Missouri throughout the summer months attacking cattle, people, and various other hosts.
  • Hall in their Bulletin 256.
  • The larval stages of the majority of Missouri horse flies are found in water.
  • In order to pupate, they shift from aquatic to terrestrial environments and often emerge synchronously; that is, all adults of a specific species emerge at the same time, which makes mate-finding easier.
  • However, synchronized emergences result in one species being present for an extended period of time before being replaced by another species and so on.
  • Female horse flies seek blood as a source of energy and as a raw material for the production of eggs.
  • Perhaps its eyesight is similar to that of “thermal vision” cameras, which are used to detect heat leaks in buildings.
  • Humans are frequently bitten, particularly in and near swimming pools, streams, and ponds, as well as on hikes through the woods.
  • When horse fly numbers are enormous and their feeding pressure is intense, this results in pain and annoyance for the host, as well as economically significant blood loss for the industry.
  • Because the vast majority of horse flies eat during the day, it is theoretically feasible to protect Missouri cattle, horses, and humans from assault by being indoors throughout the daytime hours of the year.

Because Missouri’s terrain is inappropriate for many recommendations that are beneficial in other parts of the globe, such as shifting cattle from low-lying to high pasture during the summer, they are useless in Missouri.

Insecticidal control

Horse flies have a unique biochemistry that makes it difficult for pesticides to effectively control them. To theoretically kill the larvae, poisoning ponds and streams would be an option; however, this would be unlawful and logistically impossible to do. Due to the fact that adult flies are huge, strong insects that migrate fast from host to host, it is difficult to administer enough pesticide to cattle to provide effective control without overdosing the animals. Field investigations, on the other hand, have showed that daily treatment of cattle with synergized pyrethrins (a natural insecticide derived from plants of the genusChrysanthemum) reduces the number of horse flies that bite the cattle without harming the calves.

It seems unlikely that many farmers would be able to or will be willing to round up beef herds on a daily basis.

This economic equation, on the other hand, alters if the cattle are trained to treat themselves well.

It will continue to do so in the future.

Insecticide to use

Acquire a concentrated pyrethrins insecticide that has been labeled for direct application to either beef or dairy cattle. If it is intended for beef cattle, it should contain around 1 percent pyrethrins with piperonyl butoxide (a synergist that enhances the efficacy of the pyrethrins). Materials designated for dairy cattle will contain less pesticide than those labeled for beef cattle. Farmers’ supply companies and agricultural chemical companies sell appropriate formulas under a variety of trade names.

How to apply the spray

If you want the best results, spray the cattle with the pesticide on a daily basis. If you just want partial control, treat the cattle with the insecticide every other day. This can be accomplished by hand if necessary. The substance may be applied with a rubbing motion or sponged on when working with horses or show animals. Utilize the insecticidal concentrate undiluted if it is indicated on the label, since a modest amount of the undiluted substance will provide better protection than larger volumes of insecticidal concentrate mixed with water.

Ensure that the spray only touches the ends of a cow’s hair coat and that it does not reach the hide; otherwise, blistering of the skin may result.

It is only possible to utilize an automated treadle type sprayer on beef cattle to administer a spray every day, as this is the only technique of doing so.

On certain farms, water tanks may be caged in to create this condition, or watering ponds can be utilized to give the necessary water.

A number of battery- or solar-powered cow sprayers have been introduced in recent years; however, all of them involve mineral or similar bait and do not take advantage of forced-use placement.

How to build a treadle sprayer

Most cattle farmers may create a sprayer from easily accessible materials, as seen in Figure 3, which is a front-view diagram of a sprayer. The pump device, copper or plastic tubing, nozzles, springs, and other components may be purchased at most agricultural supply or other companies that specialize in sprayer parts and accessories. Figure 3A treadle sprayer for livestock is seen in the front perspective. The following is the procedure for building the sprayer described by Wingo and Kyd, with galvanized metal and CCA-treated timber being used whenever practical.

  • Build the treadle foundation (B) out of angle iron, which should measure approximately 28 x 30 inches. Cut a piece of angle iron approximately 62 inches long for the upright using the same type of angle iron (D). Weld the upright (D) to the treadle base (B) to complete the assembly. Make the treadle (A) out of solid timber or plywood that has been fastened or screwed down securely. It should measure approximately 30 × 30 x 2 inches. Cover the treadle (A) with 1-inch-mesh welded hardware cloth and attach it to the treadle base with a welded hardware cloth hinge (B). a piece of angle iron roughly 15 inches in length that is bolted to the top of the treadle
  • The treadle lever (F) Attach a 2 x 8 board (I) measuring 62 inches in length to the angle iron upright using bolts (D). This will act as a foundation for the pump component to be installed on. Pump assembly (G) should be mounted in such a way that the side nozzle (M) is 16 inches above the treadle base. It is important to note that there are many various types of spray pumps available
  • The particular arrangement of your sprayer assembly and its connection to the treadle will depend on the individual pump you select. The pump assembly is equipped with a bracket (H) that supports a plastic or metal container (H) that stores about one gallon of pesticide concentration. When used with the pump, the nozzle should be selected such that it produces a fine mist. To the treadle lever and to a 2 x 8 board affixed to the upright, attach an elastic shock spring (E) (I). After the cattle have depressed the treadle, the spring’s purpose is to elevate the treadle each time they do so
  • The amount of movement of the treadle is controlled by a brake bolt (C) positioned in the upright
  • (D). Establish a limit for the movement of the treadle by adjusting the brake bolt to no more than 2 inches. Set the poles (Q) so that the final chute will be 3 feet wide and will be positioned in a gate that the cattle must pass through each day to go to the pasture. This is a top view of the treadle sprayer, as seen in Figure 4.

FIGURE 4: Treadle sprayer from the top angle

  • Install the treadle assembly as stated above once the posts have been installed. Installation of the horizontal chute boards (P) follows once this is completed. It is vital to have a strong foundation for the treadle base. If the ground where you want to put the treadle sprayer is soft, you may attach 2 x 6 wood skids to the treadle base to act as a foundation for the machine. Following the installation of the horizontal chute boards, a second post should be installed, and boards should be installed to form a protective rail (R). Cattle will be prevented from rubbing against the pump assembly and causing damage. Attach the pump assembly to the tubing (copper or plastic) that is the proper size (G). Route this tubing up the 2 x 8 board upright (I) until it reaches the center top board (J) of the chute, as seen in Figure 3. Install the central nozzle in such a way that it sprays directly onto the backs of cattle as they pass through the chute. You may utilize a lower nozzle (N) by running tubing (K) over the top of the chute and down the side of the chute if you choose to do so. You must plug the line beyond the center nozzle (L) if you do not have one. Place burlap or carpet curtains on the sides and end of the chute to keep out the elements. At the very least, the bottom of the curtains should be around 20 inches above the ground level. These curtains serve as a windbreak, preventing the spray from being blown away before it has a chance to settle on the cattle’s fur. The end curtains should be left open until the animals become accustomed to passing through the chute.

Horse flies that bite pastured cattle will be reduced to a minimum if the treadle sprayer is designed, mounted, and loaded with a suitable pesticide in the right quantities. While the pyrethrins are undoubtedly responsible for part of the flies’ deaths, the compound also functions as a repellant to the insects. In addition to horn flies and face flies, the sprayer will also control them, so it is not essential to use extra treatments against these pests.

Trapping horse flies

Some cattle farmers choose not to use any insecticides in order to limit the number of horse flies on their cattle. A horse fly trap of the umbrella type was tested under Missouri pasture and range settings by MU Extension entomologist Jim Huggans in the late 1970s and shown that it could offer quantifiable control for a small number of cattle or horses.

How to build a horse fly trap

A common method of operation for insect traps is to take advantage of the insect’s behavior. It is their inherent tendency to “home in” on items that they see as hosts, as well as their natural drive to fly or crawl upward that are utilized in the case of horse flies (negative geotropism). A horse fly trap, such as an umbrella trap or a “Manitoba-type” trap, is simple to create, although it may take multiple traps to significantly lower bite rates. The trap is made up of four panels composed of plastic sheeting, plastic screening, or mosquito netting, depending on the material.

  • The “tent” is roughly the shape of a pyramid approximately 4 feet high and 3 feet broad along each of its four bases, with each base being about 4 feet high and 3 feet wide.
  • The center of the “tent” canopy is supported by a pole approximately 6 feet in height (Figure 6).
  • It is attached to a cable and let to swing freely under the canopy as a decorative element.
  • If large copper float balls, which are commonly used in agricultural plumbing applications, are available, they are an excellent alternative.
  • Using four sheets of plastic sheeting, screening, or mosquito netting cut into triangles of 4 x 4 x 3 feet and stapled or fused together to form a pyramid shape, the “tent” may be assembled in minutes.
  • The horse fly trap with an umbrella design in action.
  • The beach ball, which is painted black, hangs slightly below the canopy’s main structure.

Prepare each pipe by flattening the final 3 inches of one end, drilling two 3/8-inch holes in the flattened piece, and bolting to the bottom of the wooden base plate.

Drill a 1/8-inch hole around the midway of each leg, and then thread a length of robust wire through each hole, ensuring that it links each leg to the other leg.

The “bait” ball should be hung from the middle of the canopy covering such that half of the ball is below the bottom border of the canopy covering and the other half is above it.

Construction of this cone is most successful when it is made of transparent material (for example, a plastic drinking cup with the bottom cut out).

The inverted cone is then bonded into the interior of the jar lid, and the jar is screwed upside down into the lid of the container.

Cut the canopy at its peak to make room for the plywood square, and then connect the two pieces of plywood together.

Figure 7 (top) Part of the umbrella-type horse fly trap that serves as the “trap.” Attach a jar lid to a wooden base plate by turning it upside down. Make a hole in the base plate and lid, then glue a plastic cone inside the lid to hold it all together. Replace the jar with a new one.

Using a horse fly trap

Movement and heat coming from the black-painted beach ball appear to attract female horse flies once the trap is in action. In many situations, they abandon their cattle or horses and fly to the ball to “inspect” it. When they realize that they are not a host animal, they often fly quickly upward and become entangled in the trap’s “tent” canopy, which traps them within. Most of the time, they continue crawling upward and finally move through the hole in the plywood base, past the inverted funnel, and into the plastic jar where they are unable to escape and return to their original hosts.

The position of the trap appears to be essential and is best discovered by trial and error in many cases.

If livestock are not kept out of the trap by fence, they will be intrigued and will destroy it if they are not kept out.

The trap can be placed on a fertile spot just beyond the cow or horse pastures in some instances, depending on the situation.

To quickly kill the flies, a little piece of insecticide-impregnated resin can be inserted in their catch jar.

Field testing have revealed that it is typically necessary to place several of these traps throughout a pasture in order to achieve a measurable reduction in the horse fly population.

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