/ Anything worse than a Horse Fly

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lone - on 10 Jul 2017
I was out walking in the South Wales Valleys this weekend, I got been bitten by a 'lot' of Horse Flies throughout the day, I think at one point I spent half an hour waving the map about and then making a run for it! They literally came in from all directions.

I can't, off the top of my head, think of anything worse that a Horse Fly Bite other than a Hornet Sting perhaps, but occasionally I'd hear a loud buzzing noise very nearby, the sound of something substantially bigger, turn around, and I can hear it but can't see it then Zap ! The Sting left a huge 3 inch mark.

Any ideas

Jason

davidbeynon on 10 Jul 2017
In reply to lone:

Personally I hate ticks more, but that's probably because I have seen more of them lately.
Sir Chasm - on 10 Jul 2017
In reply to lone:
Death adders.
Post edited at 15:24
felt - on 10 Jul 2017
In reply to lone:

House spiders, no problem. They usually move in temporarily in September, but for some reason are early this year. Last two days, two monsters carefully cupped, postcard-slidded and flung 200m from house. Ugh.
tmawer - on 10 Jul 2017
In reply to lone:

From the size of the bite they take, i wonder if that's where the saying "I could eat a horse" comes from!?
Welsh Kate - on 10 Jul 2017
In reply to lone:

I was out at the Waterfalls near Ystradfellte on Saturday and as I was putting on my boots had to fend off lots of the b*****s, they seem to be particularly bad this year. A liberal application of Smidge soon saw the back of them
Pursued by a bear - on 10 Jul 2017
In reply to lone:

They are a menace, and their ability to bite you through clothing is a particular delight.

If you want to enjoy another especially endearing insect, google Blanford Fly. My wife was bitten by one last month and after the infection started tracking back up the veins, was on a course of antibiotics as a result. Lovely.

T.
Sutok - on 10 Jul 2017
In reply to Pursued by a bear:

Blandford fly bites are horrendous.

I wound up looking like an extra from a zombie movie covered in infected sores...

Shockingly bad bite from such a tiny insect!
toad - on 10 Jul 2017
In reply to lone:

It's amusing to hear kiwis talk about sandflies as the ultimate insect apocalypse. They're not pleasant, but nothing compared to a still scottish summer, or a horsefly infested midlands bog
Pursued by a bear - on 10 Jul 2017
In reply to Sutok:

Thanks for correcting my spelling; Blandford fly, of course.

Having seen what one bite looks like, you have my gravest sympathies if you had a number of bites; must have been a horror show.

T.
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andyjohnson0 - on 10 Jul 2017
In reply to Pursued by a bear:

Story of a guy who was nearly killed by a single ladybird bite: https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2017/jul/07/experience-a-ladybird-nearly-killed-me
Siward on 10 Jul 2017
In reply to lone:

Dragon Fire?
Pbob on 10 Jul 2017
In reply to lone:

Flying horses?
PeakDJ on 11 Jul 2017
In reply to toad:

> It's amusing to hear kiwis talk about sandflies as the ultimate insect apocalypse. They're not pleasant, but nothing compared to a still scottish summer, or a horsefly infested midlands bog

I disagree - if you're ever in Thailand I could show you a beach where the sandflies can rival the Scottish midge both in terms of numbers and voracity. Have you ever really been to a sandfly-infested beach? Maybe the ones in NZ aren't so bad, but the ones I have encountered around SE Asia are far, far worse than the midge or horsefly...
Flinticus - on 11 Jul 2017
In reply to PeakDJ:

I was on a sandfly infested beach in Scotland, on the east coast near North Berwick.

There's a small promontory sticking out into the beach where I had pitched before a few times, with no issues.

The last time must have co-incided with a sandfly emergence event. They didn't seem to be biting me (I was wearing trousers and trainers, rapidly tucking trouser legs into socks (a great look) but their sheear numbers and swarming agglomarations freaked me right out. The beach was some abomination from Hell.
fmck - on 15 Jul 2017
In reply to lone:

In Scotland the biting insects are very regimented. First the infintary midge is sent in great numbers. Snipper ticks come in from God knows where. The flying cavalry dear keg can descend quickly but with the arrival of the helicopter gun ships (horse fly) it can't get much worse.
Bob Kemp - on 15 Jul 2017
In reply to lone:
I've only ever seen a dead one, fortunately, but there's a giant horsefly about 3cm long, the UK's biggest fly. Wouldn't fancy a bite from one of them.
Post edited at 12:04
Toccata on 15 Jul 2017
Robert Durran - on 15 Jul 2017
In reply to lone:

A horse?
Tim Sparrow on 15 Jul 2017
In reply to Welsh Kate:
Got attacked by , ooh, must have been millions, at Stack Rocks car park in Pembroke last week, and all along the coast path. Never had a problem at the coast before.
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Dax H - on 15 Jul 2017
In reply to Pursued by a bear:

> They are a menace, and their ability to bite you through clothing is a particular delight.

I didn't know this was the case until Thursday morning.
There were loads on the site I was working on so despite the heat I put my jacket on to cover my arms and a head net too.
I felt something on my left hand and it was a horse fly biting through my latex dipped cotton glove.
5 mins later one bit through my right glove too.
Both hands now have a swollen spot and itch like hell now.

Flamingsarah - on 15 Jul 2017
In reply to lone:

I was at Scugdale on the very hot Sunday a couple of weeks ago and looked down to see the tiniest green fly on my hand. Brushed it off but it transpired it had managed to bite me. My hand swelled up the next daytime a balloon, right up to my wrist and I had to get a course of penicillin.
I was bitten by a horse fly a couple of years ago in Slovenia, still have the scar from it!
llechwedd - on 15 Jul 2017
In reply to Bob Kemp:

> I've only ever seen a dead one, fortunately, but there's a giant horsefly about 3cm long, the UK's biggest fly. Wouldn't fancy a bite from one of them.

I get them in my garden. They're terrifying to look at- They're so big, that the body parts that will damage you are visible at a casual glance. See one sunning itself and (shudder) I try to sneak past it, giving it a wide berth.
They evoke that same visceral fear that you experience the first time you see a giant Wood Wasp, but whereas the wasp is harmless, the big horsefly will mess you up.
Like their littler version, they fly quietly; but at least the temporary solar eclipse they can generate as they home in provides for the possibility that you may be just able to escape....
abr1966 - on 15 Jul 2017
In reply to lone:

Nasty bastards! My other half has been hospitalised by one previously with really bad infection....they are drawn to her like bees on honey! Bad time of year....she's currently on her second lot of antibiotics this summer from horse fly bites!
pavelk - on 15 Jul 2017
In reply to lone:

There are many species of insects called horse fly. The most common (about normal fly size) is genus Haematopota, at least here in Czech. There are some quite big ones (and loud) like Tabanus genus and their bite is really painful. They are called pale giant horse-fly in English, I think
Bob Kemp - on 15 Jul 2017
In reply to pavelk:

Thanks Pavelk. I think that's the species I was referring to. We used to call them ox-flies, not sure where I got that from. To be avoided anyway...

I did a quick google earlier and apparently the reason that horsefly bites are painful is because their mouthparts are designed to cut rather like a pair of scissors, as opposed to insects that penetrate the skin in an injective way.
Jon Stewart - on 15 Jul 2017
In reply to lone:

The Theresa Mayfly?
Bulls Crack - on 16 Jul 2017
In reply to Sutok:

Although it is named after the Blandford area, it is also found in other areas including Norwich and Oxfordshire.

Not a problem!
llechwedd - on 16 Jul 2017

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