Before we get into how to keep horse flies out of your pool, let’s admit that having a pool can be incredibly relaxing, but it comes at a cost. Not just financially, but in the upkeep of the pool, the cleaning process and the security of it.
The thing is, even with all of these bases covered, sometimes your relaxing time is hindered by an infestation of horseflies. You try to cool off after a hard day or relax in your spare time and these critters are flying around you!
Nobody wants to be swatting flies away from them when they’re supposed to be relaxing and calming down, so what’s the answer?
Well, this guide has that covered. We’re going to take you through how you can keep horse flies away from your pool, what might be attracting them and other handy tips that can be useful for you in the future.
So, let’s take a dip into our horse fly prevention guide!
Table of Contents
What Exactly Is A Horse Fly?
Horse flies are a type of flying insect that received their name due to their behavior. They often bother horses and many other mammals for their blood. This is because the females need a blood source in order for them to reproduce.
Bites from horse flies can be very painful and lead to various problems in the future. Their mouths are designed to rip and tear areas, such as our skin, to get to the blood inside. So many people wanting to keep bees and wasps away from their pool, may also want to keep horse flies out as well!
In fact, the females will keep on tearing away until they get what they want – or you’ve swatted them!
After being bitten, you might feel itching, pain, burning, see some swelling and feel slightly weak. Other than this, humans are normally fine, but animals like horses aren’t. This is because horse flies carry with them “swamp fever”, which is deadly to horses.
You’ll frequently see horse flies near large areas of water – this is expected because their common hosts, such as horses, will visit these areas often to drink and rehydrate.
Due to this setting serving perfectly, this is typically where horse flies will breed and reproduce in numbers.
For the larvae to grow, they need to be in wet soil – and this is much more likely to happen near rivers, lakes, ponds etc. As a result, they frequently live and thrive in wooded areas like forests.
They are dark, normally black or dark brown and gray and have six legs. They’re typical to see in the US but specifically in warmer states due to the climate.
Colder states might still see them, but it is less likely because they find it difficult to survive for long enough to reproduce.
So, Why Do They Come To My Swimming Pool?
As we mentioned, horse flies’ usual habitat is near bodies of water, so a swimming pool is a fine alternative for them.
But there are other reasons. Horse flies have an attraction to light. Mostly, they are active in the daytime, and you’ll notice far more of them at this time.
As a result, your swimming pool, which is likely outside getting the sunlight – is causing s reflection on the surface of the water. Horse flies, much like moths – will fly toward the light.
Additionally, as we know that horse flies need blood – if you’re in the swimming pool, you’re attracting them further. Not only is the light acting as an attraction, but you’re the prize!
Strangely though, horse flies tend to follow dark, mobile items – so if you’re wearing a black shirt or swimsuit on your way to the pool, you might want to reconsider your wardrobe! Of course, if they follow you – they’ll likely be in numbers and stick around the pool.
How Can I Solve My Horse Fly Problem?
We can’t keep on worrying about horse flies when we want to have a nice, relaxing session in the pool. So, what can we do about them? Consider trying some of these simple and easy solutions:
1. Horse Fly Traps
Local stores will sell horse fly traps normally, but if not you can find them online. They’re designed to hang around the area and move to attract horse flies. When the horse fly goes toward the trap, mistakenly thinking it might be a new host – they’ll get stuck.
Their bodies will be stuck in between the parts and the other metal area and will eventually die from its heat.
You could otherwise decide to opt for a bag trap, which is a type of trap that has food in it that attracts the horse fly and then, when the horse fly has entered through the funnel, they cannot get out again.
The food in the bag acts as such a powerful bait that horse flies will always head into it.
The thing to remember is to put these types of traps as far away from your swimming pool as possible, otherwise horse flies from further away will pass the pool to get to it.
Another type of trap you could choose is using light. It’s a very common trap for pests like moths, mosquitos and other flies – but during the day it is very effective at getting horse flies.
You can purchase this at most pest control places and normal stores.
The light attracts the horse fly and then the electric of the light when they land will zap them dead.
You’ll want to make sure that these types of traps are away from the water, in case of a fatal accident or water accidentally splashing over the trap.
2. Setting Out Fly Paper
This kind of method has often been seen on TV and cartoons specifically, but it is a very effective way to keep horse flies away from your pool. You would put up fly paper strips which are very sticky. The horse flies will fly onto the strips and get stuck.
The one drawback to these strips is when they become full of horse flies, and you’ll need to dispose of them, which can be unpleasant.
Moreover, if you have many horse flies in the area, you’d have to keep getting up and out of the pool, which might defeat the object of relaxing!
3. Use A Natural Pesticide
Pesticides can be effective in keeping horse flies away from the area, but you need to make sure that they’re safe for you and your family.
If you can find a natural pesticide from a garden store, you can spray that around the area, and you should see a drop in the number of horse flies!
Effective Prevention Strategies
Effectively Preventing horse flies ahead of an infestation is your best chance of consistently keeping them away from the swimming pool.
Always try to cover your pool when it is not in use and avoid having other stagnant waters or reflective lights in the area. This prevention strategy also works great for keeping away mosquitoes from your pool.
Switch off lights nearby when they’re not in use and try to wear dark clothing if you have to pass horse flies.
Consider wearing a repellent cream or spray when outside with fewer clothes on, and inform any younger children about safety when horse flies are around.
It’s also important to keep your pool area clean and tidy, free of trash and open drinks. You can also burn citrus candles in the area, as horse flies hate the smell and taste of the acid.
Finally, it’s significant that you keep your garden tidy by mowing the lawn frequently and removing weeds or other insect nests.
Our Conclusion on Keeping Horse Flies Away From Your Swimming Pool
We hope you enjoyed out guide on how to keep horse flies out of your pool area! Horse flies can be annoying around your pool, but you don’t have to put up with them. Use these simple solutions we recommended above, and you can be back in the swimming pool in peace in no time!
Hi, I am Victor, co-owner of All About Pools and an expert on swimming pool equipment and machinery. I have a degree in Business Marketing from the University of Missouri-Kansas City and my hobbies include lacrosse, teaching swimming, graphic design, diving, traveling, and going on hikes with my two dogs.