Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Blackflies *shiver*

Did you know Canada.. it's that time of year again!  Start out in Mid-May and last until Mid to Late June, the blackfly is almost upon us. 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 - but that's three weeks too long for many of us.

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

4 comments:

  1. We had none last year, and this year they are so bad you can't take a deep breath for fear of swallowing one.

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  2. You are correct about the blackflies in Northern Ontario...I live in Northern Ontario and I *DESPISE* the nasty evil things! The worst part with them is you can not feel them on you until it is too late. I hate mosquito's as well but at least you have a fighting chance with them. You can hear them buzzing around you and/or feel them on you so that you have time to SPLAT! Not the case with the stinking blackflies.

    A few years ago, my neck was so swollen up that I could not even turn it one side or the other for several weeks. And...you are right, 3 weeks of a lifespan is too much, 3 days is even too much, heck, what are they even on the earth for period? No purpose that I can see! Just in case I wasn't clear, I really hate blackflies. ;-)

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