Horse and deer flies are two of the nastiest biting insects I have come across.
Don't let those big blue green eyes fool you, the flies eyes not mine, these insects are out to hurt you. Look at the mouth end! It is comprised of a pair of machete like inscisors which rip apart your flesh in an instant causing the blood to flow and allowing the fly to gorge itself.
It is reported that deer flies are the most likely to bite humans but they seem to be in direct competition with the horse flies in these parts. To make matters worse the pests hunt in packs, at times this summer they hunted in squadrons.
The Flies must die! this has been my motto throughout the hot dry summer but the only sure fire way of killing them is to swat them or to ensnare them in a chemical trap.
In windy conditions they lie low around swimming pools and patio areas, conserving energy for future blood sucking raids.
It was on one such windy day that I worked happily away in the garden, shovelling ton after ton of soil and rubble. All was well, the soil heaps were diminishing and one small corner of the garden was emerging from the unpromising land.
As I wheeled my wheelbarrow, along paths broad and narrow, I noticed that the cooling breeze was fading away. I was not the only creature to observe this, crickets and butterflies again took to the wing the swallows too.
Nearby and more sinister by far the flies were stirring.
Wing commander to fly squadron ready for take off…off we go
heading towards the stables and we will approach the target from the rear.
Hold that formation keep it tight.
Target five meters ahead, there he is the barrow boy
We’re coming out of the sun, he can’t see us ok everybody here we go strike! strike! strike!
Argh! The pain in my right shoulder as the first fly bit, I let the barrow fall Argh! A second bite then a third and a fourth, as I tried to swat the attackers away a fifth bite to my shoulder marked then end of that particular attack. My shoulder was sore and already the flesh was swelling, reacting to the bites.
Wing commander to fly squadron, ok everybody back to base! Job well done