Moose fly is an annoying parasite

Moose fly is an annoying parasite
Moose fly is an annoying parasite

At the end of summer, an annoying moose fly appears in the forests of Siberia and central Russia (a photo of the insect is presented in this article). In addition to the territory of our country, it still lives in the north of China, in North America and Scandinavia. The number of parasites directly depends on the number of deer and elk.

moose fly

Moose fly, moose tick, moose louse, deer bloodsucker - all this is the same insect belonging to the Hippoboscidae family. The three-millimeter body has a flattened shape and is covered with light brown leathery dense covers. On the head in deep depressions there are antennae that practically do not protrude above the surface. The moose fly has large eyes, consisting of more than 2.5 thousand facets. Her eyes occupy ¼ of the entire body, in addition to them, there are 3 more simple eyes on the fly's head. The mouth apparatus of this insect belongs to the piercing-sucking type and has a similar structure to the proboscis of a fly, which is called the autumn stinger. The deer bloodsucker has dense and transparent wings with a small number of veins, their length is from 5.5 to 6 mm. On the sides of the chest are strong legs with thickened hips and asymmetrical claws. The moose fly is equipped with an elastic abdomen, which, when eating, is capable of muchincrease in size.

moose fly photo

This type of insect belongs to the round-life ectoparasites. In other words, the moose fly feeds only on blood, which it extracts from warm-blooded animals. Artiodactyl animals belong to its main hosts-breadwinners. These are roe deer, deer, deer and elk. In addition, the bloodsucker fly successfully uses domestic cattle, wild boars, bears, foxes, dogs, badgers, sheep, and so on. If a high number of this parasite is observed, then the bite of an elk fly also threatens a person, and it should be noted that it is quite painful. At the site of the bite, the skin turns red, a dense nodule appears, which can last up to 20 days.

Why is it called moose louse or tick? Despite the presence of well-developed wings, these insects fly rather poorly and over short distances. Wings, in fact, they need to fly to the smell of a warm-blooded animal. And as soon as they reach their goal, they are immediately dumped. All their further life is already taking place on the body of the host-breadwinner. They burrow into his fur, bite through his skin and begin to feed on blood. Hence the comparison with the common louse and tick.

moose fly bite

After a couple of weeks of a serene life, bloodsuckers reach puberty, they begin to keep in pairs: a female with a male. After fertilization, after 16 days, the female gives birth to the first larva. Note that it gives birth, since this type of insect belongs to viviparous, or rather, pupal-bearing. In the female in the body firstan egg develops, then a larva. Three-millimeter formed prepupae are already born. After a few hours, they turn into a false cocoon (puparium), become covered with a hard shell and fall to the ground. This usually happens from October to March. In this state, the pupae will remain until August, and then new winged moose flies appear. The female manages to lay up to 30 such puparia in her life (about six months).

These parasites bring great anxiety to animals, since they can settle in hundreds on one individual. And this leads to the depletion of the animal, the young growth may be stunted. Unfortunately, effective repellents against this insect have not been found. To protect yourself from his bites, you need to take care of your clothes when going to the forest. The cuffs on the sleeves should fit snugly to the body, it is better to tuck the trousers into socks, and there must be a hat on the head. After a walk, carefully inspect your clothes and remove pests hiding in them.

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