“They basically slash their way in[to your skin]. You can tell the difference between female and male deer flies by looking at their eyes--the female's eyes are set widely apart (to better see a potential host, perhaps), while the eyes of the male are so close together that they touch. For example, down on the coast, you hear of the ‘greenheads’ on the beaches.”, One of the species Dill found had yellow and black stripes, similar to a yellowjacket. However, the 2012 deer fly season started 15 days earlier (first sighting was June 1, 2012) than the 2013 season (first sighting was June 16, 2013). Because of that, people have done some funny things to avoid deer fly bites, like making a hat out of duct tape with the adhesive part of the tape facing out to catch the flies. Once hatched, larvae eat the blood meal provided by the mother as well as aquatic insects. That may have been because they were all descending on my poor dog, who was, typical Lab, a bit oblivious. An egg mass has been found as early as May 5th and as late October 13th. Their distribution is worldwide, though they have not been reported in Iceland, Greenland, and Hawaii. More research is required. July 19, 2014. Antennae: antennae are usually longer than their head. And the larvae feed on aquatic predators, including mosquito larvae. 1. Horse and deer flies are annoying biting pests of wildlife, livestock, and humans. Deer flies are bloodsucking insects considered pests to humans and cattle. We walked for about a half-mile through the swampy woods. By the time the cold weather months hit us, three of New Hampshire’s eight species of bats have already migrated to warmer places in the South and Mid-Atlantic regions. I have no doubt that these traps catch deer flies, but the real measure of success isn’t in the numbers of flies caught by a trap but rather in the measurable reduction in deer fly attacks/bites. HORSE & DEER FLY FACTS: Although most flies have mouthparts adapted for sucking, female horseflies are able to cut into flesh with their knife-like mouthparts. Deer flies are most active in June and July. I decided to do my own experiment. Credit Griffin Dill / University of Maine Cooperative Extension/via Bangor Daily News, Credit Courtesy of Howard Russell / via Bangor Daily News, Courtesy of Howard Russell/via Bangor Daily News, Maine Public Holiday Programming Schedule, Maine Public On Your Voice-Activated Device, Maine High School Basketball Championship Weekend, Watch Maine Public Television on YouTube TV or with an Antenna, Community Calendar – Virtual and Live Events in Maine, Maine Public's Tiny Screen Concert Series/Brown Bag Edition, Maine Public's Dash of Maine Holiday Cooking Challenge, Friends of the Kotzschmar Organ - Christmas With Kennerley, Facts About Maine Public's Federal Funding, Maine Public's FCC Public Inspection Files, Jim Dill, a pest management specialist for the University of Maine Cooperative Extension, Howard Russell, entomologist at Michigan State University, North Florida Research and Education Center. While deer flies can spread tularemia, it’s extremely rare. “In that way, they’re kind of a mixed blessing,” Russell said. They survive by sucking the blood of cattle and humans. Interestingly, it’s only the female flies that bite. “No satisfactory methods have been developed for control of horse and deer flies. Deer flies (Chrysops spp., 33 species) range from 1/4 to ½ inch long, black to brown in coloration, often with yellowish markings. Each winter, when I find myself occasionally longing for the warmer weather of summer, I try to remember about deer flies. 2. They are large flies with large brightly-coloured compound eyes, and large clear wings with dark bands. Most species overwinter in the larval stage and pupate during the spring and early summer. In addition to having a painful bite, deer flies and horseflies are fast, strong flyers. Another reported remedy is to use a dark blue cup covered in a sticky substance called Tangle-Trap. This dog was smart enough to decline an anti-fly hat. He believes one reason is because deer flies and horse flies often aim for people’s heads, where they wiggle under hair to find skin. Wildlife. That said, they aren't unique to New Hampshire by any means--in fact, closely related species are found around the world--but we have at least our fair share of them.Deer flies are closely related to horse flies, both being of the Tabanidae family with deer flies in the genus Chrysops. Heady stuff--I'm not used to that kind of attention. In the United States and Canada, about 350 different species of these flies exist, and they vary greatly in size and appearance. Scientific Name: Chrysops sp. Both genuses are in the Tabanidae family. Deer fly bites introduce anticoagulant compounds that cause severe issues in individuals with related allergies. It makes no matter when you come. If you have been attacked by deer flies, you know they need no introduction. Deer fly maggots have small heads and tan or white tapered bodies, but you’re unlikely to see them. They are thought to be alerted to our presence by the carbon dioxide we breathe out--and by sight. You'll keep the male deer fly company that way. This story appears through a media sharing agreement with Bangor Daily News. Deer flies are members of the horse fly family, Tabanidae. Their bites are painful, and once they home in on a target, they’re nearly impossible to shake. Deer are the typical host for this fly, but in their absence, Deer Fly females will take a blood meal from anything or anyone. This time of year, you're likely to see cars and pickup trucks heading home on the highways with fresh-cut Christmas trees tied to roofs or in the truck beds. “They’re very fast — among the fastest flying of all insects,” said Russell, though he does not know if their top speed has ever been recorded. The horse fly is a large fly (10-30 mm in length) that is a serious nuisance to livestock. “As you’re walking along, one fly can bounce around your head and after you’ve gone 10 to 15 feet, oftentimes it will leave you. Of course you could wait a few weeks for the deer fly season to pass, have a seat on the screen porch, and fill that blue cup with a cool beverage. 4. In one word they are the annoying pests that you want to get rid of. The bites can be painful--female deer flies have two sets of scissor-like teeth that cut through skin in order to slice into a blood vessel. 3. The wings usually lack dark areas, but some species have wings that are entirely dark. Insect repellent reportedly does NOT work on deer flies, so there's no point in drenching yourself in poison on their account if you're headed into the woods. Each winter, when I find myself occasionally longing for the warmer weather of summer, I try to remember about deer flies.You are not likely to find much mention of deer flies in the tourist literature, as they can make a misery of a simple walk in the New Hampshire woods on a warm July morning or evening. The deer fly is the term given to the small counterpart of the larger horse fly. Horse fly. Adult life span is 30 to 60 days. Deer fly in the summer in this area and much of the Northwestern United Sates and the Mid-west are a curse to anyone on the beaches, waterways and woods. A few flies can quickly become hundreds the longer you stay in the area. I'll wait for you morning to end of day. “Their mouthparts are described as knife-like or scissor-like,” said Jim Dill, a pest management specialist for the University of Maine Cooperative Extension. Color: Their bodies are gray or light brown and some species have yellow and black striping. 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