What Attracts Horse Flies, Why Do They Bite & How to Repel These Pests in Wayne, PA
Summer is a wonderful time of year to enjoy the long evenings outdoors in the beautiful weather. The sound of children laughing and playing and adults visiting float through the air during perfect summer evenings. The sound of different insects can be heard as well. While the sound of some insects can be cathartic, the buzzing sound of horseflies is just frustrating! What can be worse than a fly buzzing in your ear? A fly that buzzes in your ear AND then bites you.
Horse Fly Identification
Here in Pennsylvania horse flies can be found buzzing around and biting. Horseflies differ in appearance from the regular house fly. They are yellowish-brown or blackish in color. Regular house flies are grey to black in color. The horsefly is typically about three quarters of an inch long while the house fly is usually about a quarter inch long. Horse flies do resemble honey bees. The largest different between the appearance of honey bees and horse flies because horseflies only have one pair of wings and their wings are covered with faint smoky spots. The horse fly has a huge head. Horse flies are known for their beautiful eyes that have lustrous metallic color shades. Six flesh piercing parts compose the mouth of the horsefly.
Horse Fly Bites
Though both male and female house flies anatomically have the same mouth, the males’ mouth pieces are weaker than the females. Only female horse flies actually bite. Female horse flies feed on blood. Similar to female mosquitoes, female horse flies must have a meal with protein to produce the eggs necessary for reproduction. Horse flies are equipped with six stylets that in their mouth that help them slice their victims. Once they slice their victim’s flesh they drink from the blood that pools in the wound. Since their bite is irritating to the victim, the victim frequently brushes the horsefly off of them. The horse fly may have to bite multiple victims to obtain enough blood. Horseflies will be attracted to their victims by its movement, warmth, surface texture, and by the carbon dioxide it breathes out. They will typically choose cattle, horses, camels, and deer. They can also feed on smaller mammals, birds, lizards, turtles, and on animals that have recently died. If you have been bitten by a horsefly you will want to clean the affected area thoroughly. Once the bite has been cleaned, treat it with an over-the-counter antibiotic ointment or spray to help reduce the swelling, pain, and irritation that can be felt after being bitten. If you have any more severe signs, such as a rash, worsening pain, or difficulty breathing you will want to seek medical attention.
Horse flies can be tricky to get rid of. Wearing an insect repellent if you are going to be in an area where there are horseflies can at least prevent you from being bitten until you can get rid of them. Typically horseflies are the hardest to get rid of if livestock is on the property. Many homeowners will use screens to help keep horseflies out of their animals’ shelters. You can also set horse fly traps. If all of your efforts to get rid of the horse flies are not working, Pest Control Technicians, Inc. can come and set up a treatment plan that will best suit your needs. Contact us for all your pest control needs.
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