Round Table Farm

Donkeys, Goats, Books and Chickens

The Queen of Flies

Horse fly that bit the wrong person.

Horse fly that bit the wrong person.

Each summer we have a variety of flies on the farm. I blame the donkey and goat poo. Hence we let the chickens play in the corrals to scratch up the larvae before they become adult flies to irritate and feed upon donkey, goat, and human alike.

Here we have what I think is the female Western Horse Fly, Tabanus punctifer. This is a really big fly. M3 has been bitten once or twice by one of these, and he called then sneaky. He didn’t feel the initial bite, which made us wonder if they excrete some numbing agent before beginning to feast. This particular one was nibbling on the back of one of our donkeys and I gave it a thwack, which merely stunned it long enough for this picture. That is one tough fly!

Jake munching by the pond.

Jake munching by the pond.

And since I was taking photos already, our two big donks were posing for the camera. Jake is our mammoth donkey and our oldest at ~21. Tobiah is a near-mammoth, and ~11 years old. They don’t like flies either.

Tobiah following me around the pond.

Tobiah following me around the pond.

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