Flies always seem to be lingering around. In the barn, around the barn, on you, and on your horse. They won't go away and you wish they would. Luckily, we have a few tips that may help decrease the number of flies you've been stuck with.
1. Invest in fly spray/repellant. There are a number of choices available and it is important to pick the right spray for your horse. When using spray make sure to follow directions to prevent irritation or harmful reactions.
2. Try a Premise fly spray. This can be a great way to control flies around your barn and help prevent new ones from entering. For larger facilities, an automatic fly spray system may be a possibility when flies are an ongoing issue.
3. Use fly traps and tapes. To manage flies already in your barn, hanging strips of fly tape will trap any flies lingering around. Make sure to hang the tape high enough so horses or people do not run into it.
4. Manure management. Make sure to keep stalls and bedding as clean and dry as possible. This will help reduce the number of flies in and around your barn. Flies are attracted to warm moist areas and to them, a fresh pile of manure is the perfect safe place for them to feed and lay their eggs. Less manure=less flies. If you are able to take your manure to an offsite location that would be the best option. However, if you have acres of pastures, recycling the manure to fertilize your fields is another option. - As long as manure is spread out fairly well it will dry out quickly and lessen the chance for fly feeding or laying.
5. Fans. Basket fans keep air circulating in the barn and around horses making it difficult for flies to linger.
6. Maintain good housekeeping. Always make sure water buckets and feed bins are washed regularly. Make sure medications/supplements are safely locked away and put back in place after use. Make sure trash cans have lids and are taken out daily.
7. Fly Masks/Sheets. You can protect your horse with a fly mask or sheet. There are several styles to choose from. You will want to pick the best mask or sheet that will fit comfortably with your horse. Some masks provide more ear and nose coverage while others do not. It will depend on what you prefer for your environment.