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“ One moment it was sailing bliss and the next we were being eaten alive by these tiny houseflies”
Species: S. calcitrans
According to Wikipedia, the stable fly should not be confused with a deer fly or
horse fly. These species are commonly called the stable fly, barn fly, biting house
fly, dog fly, or power mower fly. Unusually for a member of the family Muscidae,
but like other members of the genus, Stomoxys calcitrans sucks blood from mammals
and that is what makes them so annoying for boaters.
HOW TO PROTECT YOURSELF
These critters originally came from the barn but are just as at home breeding on
the grasses near waters edge. They can fly almost 40 miles without sitting down so
they can be even in the most remote location. If it is a coolish day (which almost
always is not the case) you can wear long thick clothes and socks and a towel around
the back of your neck.
I don’t care what others say, there is only one effective way to protect yourself
from this insect as well as mosquitos and that is using DEET. A recent article in
GAM on Yachting magazine suggested that you use a repellent that is at least 25%