5 Horsefly insects interesting facts


Summer is finally here, and that means one thing: horseflies are out in full force! If you’ve ever been unfortunate enough to be bitten by one of these pesky critters, you know that they can really spoil your day. But what do you do if one decides to take a bite out of you? Here’s everything you need to know about these creatures and how to deal with them.

Horsefly scientific name

There are all sorts of different fly species in the world, and each one has its own scientific name. This tiny creature, for instance, is scientifically known as Tabanus atratus. This large insect gets its name from its habit of feeding on the blood of horses and other mammals. While these insects can be a nuisance, they play an essential role in the ecosystem by pollinating plants and providing food for other animals. Fortunately, there are only a handful of these species in the world, so you’re unlikely to come across one on your next hike!

Horsefly physical appearance

All of these insects have six legs like all other insects, however, they can be distinguished by their large size and uniquely patterned wings. The adult female is usually larger than the male and can grow to be up to 19 mm in length. They are dark brown or black in color and have narrow, yellow or green stripes running along their bodies. Their wings are clear, with dark spots near the tips.

The males are typically smaller, ranging from 9 to 12 mm in length. They are also dark brown or black, but their wings are entirely clear. Both genders have large eyes that touch the top of their head and long antennae. Their mouthparts are designed for cutting and tearing flesh, which is how they obtain the blood meals that they need to Survive. Given their large size and intimidating appearance, it’s no wonder that these insects are considered to be one of the most pests of all insects.

Horsefly habitat

They are found all around the world in a variety of habitats. In general, they prefer warm climates and are often found near bodies of water. Adults feed on the blood of mammals, while the larvae live in moist environments such as mud or decaying vegetation. This can include anything from manure to rotting carcasses. Because of their ability to transmit diseases, they are considered to be a serious pest species. However, they also play an essential role in the ecosystem by serving as a food source for other animals. As a result, they play a complex and fascinating role in the natural world.

Horsefly diet

There are a lot of misconceptions about what these insects eat. Some people believe that they only feed on the blood of horses, while others think that they will eat anything that moves. The truth is that these insects are actually pretty selective when it comes to their diet. While they will feed on the blood of mammals, they prefer to dine on the blood of reptiles and amphibians. In fact, they have been known to turn down meals if there isn’t enough reptilian or amphibian blood available. So, if you’re ever feeling thirsty around this insect, you might want to consider offering it a lizard or frog instead of your arm.

Horsefly behavior

Anyone who has ever been bitten by this insect knows just how painful and annoying they can be. But what exactly are these pesky insects, and why do they bite? They are a type of fly that is found all over the world. Adults range in size from 0.5 to 1.6 inches long, and they have large eyes and a proboscis, or mouthparts, that can pierce human skin. Females need blood in order to produce eggs, which is why they bite humans and other animals. The good news is that these insects are not known to transmit any diseases. However, their bites can be very painful and may cause swelling, redness, and itching. So the next time you’re out enjoying a summer day, be sure to keep an eye out for these insects – and try to avoid them if you can!

Horsefly interesting facts

They are one of the most exciting and unassuming creatures in the world. Though they are often considered a nuisance, they actually play an essential role in the ecosystem. Here are some fascinating facts about these insects that you may not know.

  1. For starters, did you know that all of these insects are female? That’s right – the males don’t bite! The females need blood to lay their eggs, so they are the ones that you have to watch out for.
  2. They are also swift flyers. They can reach speeds of up to 30 miles per hour, making them one of the fastest insects in the world.
  3. Interestingly, they are attracted to both light and dark colors. So, if you’re wearing a brightly colored shirt, you’re more likely to attract their attention than if you’re wearing something darker.
  4. Finally, they have a very short life span. Most only live for around two weeks. So, if you’re being bothered by this insect, just remember that it won’t be around for long!

Horsefly reproduction and life cycle

They are able to reproduce and lay eggs shortly after emerging from their pupal stage. The adult female will mate with a male, and then she will find a suitable host on which to lay her eggs. Depending on the species of these insects, the host can be another horse, a cow, or even a human. After the eggs hatch, the larvae will fall to the ground and begin to feed on organic matter. Once they have grown enough, they will spin a cocoon and enter the pupal stage. After several weeks, they will emerge as adults and begin the cycle anew.


Horsefly threats and predators

They are one of the most feared insects by humans and animals alike. These large, aggressive predators are capable of biting through clothes and skin, leaving their victims in immense pain. In addition to their painful bites, they can also transmit diseases such as Lyme disease and anthrax. However, there are a few creatures that help to keep their population in check. Birds, bats, and dragonflies all prey on horseflies, with some species eating over 100 horseflies per day! While these predators cannot completely eliminate their threat, they can help to reduce their numbers and keep them under control.


Do horsefly bites hurt you?

Research has shown that the bites of these animal species are very painful. There is an anticoagulant in their saliva that prevents blood from getting clotted as the insects suck up their favorite meal.


They are pesky little creatures, but they can also be fascinating. By understanding their life cycle and the role they play in the environment, we can appreciate them a bit more. Hopefully, this post has given you a new appreciation for these insects – even if you still swat them away when you see them!

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About the Author: Kinsey Locke

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