Flies, Flies and more Flies

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Connie P

Well-Known Member
Dec 1, 2002
Reaction score
Armada, Michigan
This year the flies seem to be just horrendous. I am so sick of seeing flies on my horses. I spray them several times per day - their stalls are immaculately kept, pastures picked, buckets cleaned and wiped and still flies everywhere. Every horse also has their own personal fan. Anyone else having a really bad time with flies? Any other suggestions?

I would hate to have to keep their fly masks on in the stall and I absolutely will not leave them outside all night long. I am one of those that can't sleep unless I know all my babies are tucked in for the night.
Even with just Saber we are flyeee.

Spraying him, putting on his fly mask in the day time & taking it off before dinner

& have several fly traps up and they are catching loads of 'em.

I guess they are loving the hot weather.

At least when flies come in the house it gives a couple of our cats something to do.
I was just about to post this same thing ...we have horse flies like crazy here, i cannot stand them. I carry a fly swat everywhere ...i spend most of the day just killing horse flys. I keep telling dad that we need a spraying system. When i wear shorts to the barn i spray my legs with fly spray (i shower it off afterwards...). The other night i just couldnt take it and came in and put on jeans and a long shirt ...the little suckers bit threw my jeans!

I fly spray them once or twice during the day since most are stalled but its such a pain. Really need to get a spraying system and put up some sticky strips. The sprays just do not affect the horse flys ..i can drench the in spray and seconds later a horse fly land on them and im just like :DOH!. I know they drive me nuts, but i cant stand it when i hear one of them squeel because a horse fly got them
That stinks Leanna - Thank God mine are not horse flies, but those little black ankle biters. House flies, barn flies whatever. I hate them. They conglomerate all over their faces and it stresses me out in a big way. I am constantly out there rubbing lotion on them, spraying and shooing. I can't wait for cold weather now just to be done with flies.

A friend told me about a product I can put in their feed - I think it was called equitrol and I am going to use it next spring. Hopefully won't have another year like this. Jeez!!!
Flies were terrible here earlier in the summer, but it's been so hot and DRY here that they aren't as bad now.

My vet now has honeysuckle scented fly spray in her system, smells so much better than the stinky spray we have LOL. It smells so good you don't run from it, still not so healthy to breathe I'm sure but it doesn't gag you.

I will probably regret saying this..but we usually never have much of a problem with flies till after the Darke County Fair show in August. We live about 1/2 mile from the show grounds and it seems like right after that, the problem begins. I don`t know why they are not bad..we do have a lot of mud dauber wasps around and someone once suggested they eat fly "larvae"...but this year I have noticed a marked increase in HORSE flies..they are soo nasty!!!
We are feeding Equitrol every day and have been since about April 1. We have hardly had a fly around here- maybe one or two days. I don't even have to spray my horses. Usually, flies are a huge problem. I think I will be using the Equitrol each year- it has been that good of a product!

The flies have been terrible here as well all spring and summer. We went from black flies and mosquitos to deer and horse flies to house and stable flies. It never let up once and the entire time we have had midges or noseeums (sp?). Every night near dusk they come out by the thousands.

Our auto spray does not seem to have much effect this year and neither has most of our sprays.

I'm knocking on wood... but we haven't had them quite as bad as other years. I hung fly traps out early--and one bag hung in a run-in shed filled in a week. Gross. I replaced it and there's no action now... so I wondered if we got a bunch early?? There are little bothersome ones now--but they don't bite--just cause a lot of hoof stomping. Bronco Gold helps for a short while... but once everyone is tucked in the barn--there are none in there to bother them. I strip every stall every morning, sprinkle lime on wet spots and leave it until I "make beds" in the late afternoon--with shavings. I also turn the fan on high every evening for a few hours. I've used fly masks less this year than ever before.

How I hate bugs on horses.
I have not had any problems this year with flies. I started sprinkling Apple Cider Vinegar on everyone's food twice daily and it seems to do the trick. I can't tell you why it works for me, but I have a friend that is ranch manager at a large goat ranch and I saw her using it and asked about it. I then asked my so-in-law the vet. about it and made sure it would not harm the horses. I have been using it since May and even the mesquitos are not as bad. Even the most finicky eater I have loves it.
If you are looking for a spray for the flies, look up Country Vet brand. You can also get one that is on an automatic pump with a timer. The aerosol can works great. It kills all the flies in the sprayed area very fast. This even works outside in areas such as shaded areas that they may accumulate. The CV-80 is the one I suggest. I have never found a spray for areas that worked as well, and it is safe. It is for suggested use in dairies.
The flies here have cost me a lot in vet bills!
A new foal born a few weeks ago got corneal ulcers in both eyes caused by flies. I'm still dealing with that and praying that the worst one will heal.

The fly system in my show barn has been running since the first of June. I was having problems though, with a lot of flies in there running on what was left of last years fill. I bought a new refill last week and it took about 3 days, but the barn is virtually clear of flies now!
The fly sprays don't seem to be working this year. I wonder if the flies are becoming immune?
At a lot of barns I visit , the flies have been much worse. I personally have had a better year than last year at my place. I am using solar fly traps, fly predators and a natural feed product called 'Bug Check'. The combo has been great and I haven't needed fly masks but for a few times. I do keep my property clean and my manure is also hauled away each week. So I think everything together is the key.

Just a note that I used the Equitrol years ago on my chronically foundered mare and she had a bad reaction. But she was hypersensitive to everything. I also didn't know what I know now and she did not have a natural life style.

I've used up 8 plastic disposable fly bags this summer. In the beginning the bag filled up in two weeks. The flys are definately less now. I keep a fly tape hanging next to the bags & it fills up within one day........ BTW I've found these disposable bags are better than the plastic jugs or the kind that you just put the cap on the milk jug. Yes it smells but you don't have to hang it in your main walking area...... I started out with the fly predators but was not seeing any results so decided to go with the bags again ( Lowes - Home Depot & Walmart carries them now)........... Once a day as I walk by I squish the bottom of the bag to stir up the scent which brings on more flies............... Going to tell on myself here - Our property was scheduled to be shown so I took a filled bag down to throw away - well I dropped that sucker and it burst all over the place. Ten minutes before the people arrived I didn'thave time to do anything except throw bedding on it.
Last year we were using just the fly "bell" traps and fly spray, and still had a TON of pesty flies. This year we had cooler temps until April, and I set out the fly bells earlier than the year before just after it warmed a bit (and have been using them continuously since). I also ordered monthly auto-shipments of the fly predator wasps from Spalding, and it has made a HUGE difference. For those of you who just read the word "wasp" and freak, don't worry as they're teeny-tiny little bugs that you sprinkle on manure areas or areas where it's consistently damp and they have no interest in people or animals -- just finding the fly larvae and doing their lovely work on them. So between our bells capturing the flies buzzing around and the fly predators getting them before they're off the ground, this year has been so much more comfortable for the horses. It's not 100%, so we still use fly spray, but wow what a difference!
If you havent tried this brand go out and buy it now. Its called Horse and Pony, do not confuse it with Horse and stable they look the same but do not work the same Ive tried the other. Horse and Pony drops them in mid air. I dont have a fly system, well I do me
I spray stalls in am and pm and keeps them out of the barn. Apparently we dont have them as bad as some though cuz I dont have to spray my outside horses.

downside, I go through alot of nozzles when I buy it by the gallon, it ruins them quick. Im sure its good to breathe the stuff.
BTW I've found these disposable bags are better than the plastic jugs
I have also found this to be true--darn it. I'd rather bury the contents than throw something else in the landfill. Actually--I have a hard time closing the bags after--so the one full one was buried upright out back.

Cathy--I can't imagine dropping one of those suckers... yuck!!
I make a mixture of apple cider vinegar,mouthwash,blue dawn dishsoap and put it in a pump bottle that they use for dispencing weed kill stuff (never used for weed kill bran new and has only had my mixture in it)I pump it up and spray all over inside my barn 2 times a day and even on the ground inside and outside the barn door so when my guys go inside they can get away from the bitting bugs and anoying ones as well.

plus I spray down each one with sitronella(sp)bug spray once a day - but on the boys I noticed on their studly parts which mine are all geldings now I apply SWAT cream that helps heal and keep the lower bugs from chomping on them.I also have a mini with a booboo on his leg so I apply SWAT around it to keep the bugs away so it can heal up.It seems to work for me.And my guys smell so nice - the bug spray is so quiet they do not hear it spraying on them - doing their face I spray some on my hand and put it on their face and ears.
Last year we had zillions of flies. :DOH!

This year we tried to be pro-active.

We started using the Fly-Predators. Every month we get a little packet in the mail full of shavings and little black things. The black things hatch into these teeny tiny bugs. Then you go sprinkle the tiny bugs on any pile of fresh poop that you have on your place.

I don't know HOW it works exactly, but we have not had many flies at all this year. Don't know if this is a fluke or not, but we will order the Fly Predators again next year.

And NO, I don't work for that company...

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