Thursday, April 28, 2011

Blackflies

Did you know Canada.. depending on where you live just hearing the word "black fly" can send shivers down your spine. And I've heard many times nowhere else on the planet are the black flies as big as in Northern Ontario.

Like the Mosquito, it is the female black fly that bites, but the males that swarm around the females increase the nuisance factor. The female bites a hole in the skin to suck the out blood. In response to chemicals injected by the female during this bite (including toxins and anticoagulants) the area around bites swell, becoming painful and itchy. Intense feeding can cause "Black Fly Fever", with headache, nausea, fever, swollen lymph nodes, and aching joints; these symptoms are probably a reaction to a compound in the flies' salivary glands. Less commonly, severe allergic reactions may require hospitalization.

A blackfly's average lifespan is around three weeks - they start coming out in Mid-May and last until Mid to Late June.

One solution to combat the blackflies is to take 3 times the recommended daily dosage of Vitamin B Complex for 2 weeks before heading out into the wilderness - this is suppose to cut down bites by up to 75%!

Have you ever struggled with the madness of the blackflies?

Source: CTV, Wikipedia

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