Battling flies in the summertime is a given. Some years, though, are worse than others... and I have a theory about that.
We've used every known means for battling flies at the barn. We've used fly spray on the horses... they hate it, and I have never found one that truly works. I swear the flies have little tiny gas masks!
The horses spend their summers with fly masks on during the day to keep them out of their eyes and face. We also keep multiple fans blowing in and around the barn.
We have about 15 of these solar fly traps around the farm - that start catching flies in Spring and continue until autumn. We catch billions of flies this way. Eventually, the sun bakes them and they end up in a pile inside the solar catcher. The traps are eventually dumped into the compost pile, where those flies provide necessary protein.
We keep fly tapes on hand and change them liberally. Lately, we catch this amount of flies on a fly tape in a single day. We hang them around the barn, in the henhouses, in the duck house, in the donkey house, and in the greenhouse. They are effective, but need to be changed on a daily basis... and, even through they are fairly inexpensive, we could spend our life savings on these alone.
Now... about that theory as to why some years are worse than others : Some years back, the closest dairy farm (about a quarter mile down the road from us) sold their cows and quit the dairy business. After those cows left, we noticed a marked increase in the amount of flies around the farm. This year, the next dairy farm further down the road, no longer has cows. And this year, the flies are impossible... worse than they have ever been. Hubbs wondered if having a warmer winter such as last season might be the cause. Personally, I wonder if a decrease in the number of farm animals locally might have an effect. I suppose we'll never know... but that's my theory and I'm sticking to it.
How far will a fly fly for a fresh pile of manure? I consulted the Google and found it theorized that they travel a mile or two... which might give support to my suspicion! Anyone looking for material for a agriculture thesis?
Just when we need it badly, the weather is changing today. It will be in the low 70's for the next couple of days... a welcomed relief from what the earlier part of the week was like!
It's definitely been pool weather!
Despite the heat, the garden is doing well. Rain is predicted for the next couple of days... giving me a break from watering.
I'll be spending most of the next two days in the kitchen making picnic goodies for this weekend.
We are in the midst of a coneflower explosion. I love these flowers. Each year there are more and more and more of them.
I try to concentrate on the beauty that surrounds me, and not dwell on the nuisances. Complaining about things over which I am powerless seems a waste of energy. I may adopt this as my mantra to carry with me in the coming years.