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Discipline: LD/Endurance, CMO, Trail Rider, Cartoonist, Writer, Co-Director/ Green Bean Endurance

August 12, 2009

Horse Flies: AKA little vampires

The horse flies have come out in force. They kind of make the deer flies look good in comparison. These flies are pretty much immune to the repellent sprays and have fangs that sink into the horse and hold on. The high priced sprays will claim to repel the horse fly but we've pretty much debunked that. The horses have decided that "I" am the great keeper of the horse fly. Cree is a blue roan (almost black) and his coat color is like waving a baseball bat at a pit bull....the flies come in force. I've mashed three at a time, and have counted up to eight on him, fangs sunk deep at the same time. If he sees me outside he comes running to have the flies exterminated. I'm usually a pretty passive person concerning sharing the planet with other creatures. However, I have declared gorilla warfare on the horse fly. ~E.G.


  1. I am experiencing something similar but I am afraid it's worse. I am not sure what they are but they make a horsefly look like a nat in size. They are huge flies with a white spot on their back and they land on the top of the spine,anwhere from the withers to the top of the rump is their preferred area, where a horse can't reach with their tail. They don't just bite, they graze, and the only way our horses have been able to shake them is to stop drop and roll. I have been using Warpaint along the horses back and it seems to help for about two days but then its back to feasting time again for the fly. What are these things? Do you have them?

  2. Reading a little on these blood letting pests...the slash a cut and then suck up the blood, unlike a mosquito that draws the blood up through a tiny straw like thing (aren't I scientific *LOL*). Enough of these flies can drain a horse to the point of anemia.

    What is Warpaint? I'm gonna have to do a websearch....~E.G.

  3. I've been dealing with horse flies since I was a kid. There is no spary that repels them. Just got to smack them with your hand or gallop out of the area. I've been bit by them myself and they really hurt!

    By the way, I've moved to IN now.

    Michelle Detmer

  4. Welcome to "across the river". :) Your house looks like it is lovely.


  5. Hi EG- War Paint is an insecticide for horses. It comes packaged in a plastic bottle that looks like a deodarnat container and it even dispenses like deodarant. The nice thing about it is tha tyou put it on in concentrated areas and it stays for a few days. It's sticky until it dries and can tend to leave messy "grease" spots but I have found it to be one of the most effective on the market. I try to use it sparingly because I don't like to put alot of chemicals on my horses, but it helps keep the horses from going insane.