By in Animals

Biting flies horse flies and what you can do about them


Photo Credit Scorpie

One feature of our 1820's built home was a great in-ground pool and a terrific secluded back yard that is fully wooded and full of plants and animals. It only took us until the first summer to learn about the previously unknown horror of the horsefly. They land and on you and bite in less than a second and fly around your head like a suicidal fighter plane. We made do with swatting, name calling and spraying our heads with DEET-laden bug spray for a time. After some research on the internet and a three hundred dollar gamble we were the proud owners of the Horse Pal fly trap. It seems these biting flies are visual hunters and this swinging black ball attracts them and they get caught in the net and fly upward into the bottle. We had our first prisoner within twenty minutes of setting this contraption up. This purchase has improved pool life immeasurably for my wife and I as well as guests. If you have a horsefly problem you might consider one of these.


Photo Credit Scorpie

This is where I got mine, right from the maker.

Image Credit » Wikimedia Commons free license Jim Conrad

You will need an account to comment - feel free to register or login.


cinnafire wrote on July 30, 2014, 3:37 PM

Interesting... looks like a huge version of an inverted 2L bottle of soda I turned into mosquito trap. Put a little vinegar in, cut the top off and put it in spout side first... pour in the vinegar and voila!

Scorpie wrote on July 30, 2014, 3:39 PM

Yes. I was too lazy to cook up something on my own. This works!

MegL wrote on July 30, 2014, 5:41 PM

Wow, well someone obviously studied the flies to work out what would attract them. ppose the big black ball looks similar to the side of a horse to tehm!

Scorpie wrote on July 30, 2014, 9:27 PM

HAR! yes indeed it probably does. Plus it sways in the wind.

margielynn wrote on July 30, 2014, 11:42 PM

I am glad there are smart people to invent all the items we need!

Scorpie wrote on July 31, 2014, 12:53 PM

Hehe! Me too. I was out there yesterday and there were big ole' honkin' horseflies in the bottle on top.

nitsbubb wrote on July 31, 2014, 12:57 PM

That sounds really an excellent way to take care of the flies. Thanks for the information.

JanetJenson wrote on August 1, 2014, 11:56 AM

The home made fly trap we used to use on the farm was not nearly as attractive as that, but it kept the goats from being eaten alive. A good purchase.

Scorpie wrote on August 1, 2014, 12:26 PM

Yes indeed, thanks! I saw the green-eyed monster in there yesterday. Ha!

nbaquero wrote on August 2, 2014, 6:28 AM

scorpie Interesting. I wonder how long did it take them to develop and test this trap to ensure it would work.

Scorpie wrote on August 2, 2014, 6:31 AM

Probably not long when these flies are chasing you around. They drive you insane.

nbaquero wrote on August 2, 2014, 7:17 AM

scorpie True. What I find great is the fact that whoever was studying their behavior discovered they were visual hunters as opposed to being attracted by smell.

BNelson wrote on August 2, 2014, 10:32 AM

Hmm, I live rurally, horse flies bother me and my animals, I never heard of such a contraption.

Scorpie wrote on August 2, 2014, 10:36 AM

You can check out some youtube videos of the thing in action, just search horse pal.

bridgetidelaney wrote on August 2, 2014, 12:32 PM

I'm glad that the flies that come in through the dog door here are not biting flies and just regular house flies!

Scorpie wrote on August 2, 2014, 12:40 PM

I never knew about them really until this place with the pool.

Kasman wrote on August 2, 2014, 3:22 PM

In Scotland the problem isn't horseflies, it midges - tiny biting flies which infest the west highlands during the summer months and make life a misery for anyone who likes the outdoor life.

Feisty56 wrote on August 3, 2014, 11:22 AM

Sorry, I am still giggling at the image of you all spraying your heads with bug spray. : )

Brenda wrote on August 4, 2014, 2:41 PM

We have not seen any horse flies but mesquites plenty of them. We can't even sit out on the back porch for very long because of them. We have tried everything. I am going to tell my daughter about this. During the black fly month in Maine in the mountains where their cabin is they get ate up by them.

Scorpie wrote on August 7, 2014, 10:34 AM

We combat mosquitoes by feeding the birds all year long. The bird feeders are near to the pool in the back yard and we have zero mosquitoes. We have an army of sparrows, finches, titmice, chickadees, bluejays, mourning doves, hummingbirds, nuthatches, cardinals, cowbirds, wrens and catbirds.

LeslieAdrienne wrote on August 7, 2014, 10:53 AM

Biting flies should all die! What purpose do they serve? There is a horrible fly here in Georgia whose bite is absolutely sinister! The fly is beautiful in a deceptive way... it has blue lace wings and moves delicately through the air. But, once that monster lands on you, you are immediately bitten; and, the sting of the bite is sharp and lasting.... Kill them all!!

Scorpie wrote on August 7, 2014, 12:36 PM

Perhaps the biting fly is a reminder that the meek shall inherit.

LeslieAdrienne wrote on August 9, 2014, 8:06 AM

There is nothing meek about these blue winged monsters... deceptive, but not meek!!! LOL!