More nasty flies

If you thought botflies were bad, check out Bug Girl’s post on tumbu flies.

The adult flies lay their eggs on wet laundry hanging out to dry, or in the soil or sand. Within two days, larvae hatch, and can remain alive for up to two weeks. During that time, if they come into contact with skin, they burrow in.

Oh, don’t worry, there’s more…check out the link to see how vaseline and ironing your underwear come into play.

Comments

  1. #1 bug_girl
    October 9, 2007

    And even more bot fly goodness (?) here!
    http://membracid.wordpress.com/2007/07/19/bot-flies/

    I’m trying to figure out if that’s the same video that grossed everyone else out….

  2. #2 Ed Yong
    October 9, 2007

    So essentially:

    “Hot Clothes and Vaseline Fight Parasites”

    I should have been a subeditor…

  3. #3 Dave S.
    October 9, 2007

    The botflies were bad (that video, ugh!)…but 3 cheers for duct tape once again comming to the rescue!

  4. #4 Tegumai Bopsulai, FCD
    October 11, 2007
  5. #5 Tara C. Smith
    October 11, 2007

    Interesting.

    Some tick species have been observed to survive hours of submersion in fresh water.

    I mentioned that I found a tick in my bed earlier this year, and I tried to drown it and found that indeed, they were hard as hell to kill that way. (I wanted to preserve it, so I didn’t just smash it). I ended up having to put it in alcohol instead, since it was still alive after a good 10 hours or so in water.

  6. #6 DT
    October 11, 2007

    As a child growing up in Zimbabwe our Mum always made sure the washing was ironed, even the underwear. We managed to avoid the Tumbu flies, but for some reason my dog was not so lucky. When we got her as a puppy she developed the typical lesions all over her head and stomach. But the trusty tub of vaseline came to the rescue.

    I am trying to remember a short story by a well-known author in which the man developed severe cutaneous myasis. He thought it was God’s retribution for sleeping with his maid, and a sign of some terrible sexually transmitted disease.
    Turns out that when he took up with the maid, they were to distracted for her to have any time to do the ironing….

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