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How do you control flies in your barn?

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  • How do you control flies in your barn?

    How do you all find is best to control flies in the barn and feed room? The horses seem to be fine, especially with the combo of fly spray and fans, but the flies are driving ME bonkers in my feed room and barn aisle. I'm meticulous about cleaning up, keep everything swept, and muck as often as I can, so this is not a "dirty" issue. Just a "summer" issue.

    Any suggestions welcome!
    Here Be Dragons: My blog about venturing beyond the lower levels as a dressage amateur.

  • #2
    Have you thought about buying one of those cheapo screen doors at Home Depot for your feed room? I'm giving it some thought, and we don't have near the problem with flies here that I know that some folks have because of the area they're in.

    I bought a cheap garage bike hook at HD for the garage, hung it in my tack room and put a fan up in it, pointing at the feed counter so when the weather gets nasty in August I can do things with a nice breeze (I HATE heat, humidity, and late summer).

    I also have one of those big monster fans from Tractor Supply that I can put in the aisle for when I'm doing barn chores. I don't use it that much, but when I need it it's great to have!
    "Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall." - Confucious
    <>< I.I.


    • #3
      I have noticed a big reduction using the St. Gabriel's FlySwatter from Home Depot and feeding SmartPak's Bugoff.
      Lori T
      www.facebook.com/LTEquine for product updates on the lines I rep


      • #4
        We've had a few bad years in the past with flies, but thankfully the last couple of years there haven't been many. During those bad years we hang up a lot of the sticky fly strips and replace them every few days as needed. You can catch thousands that way. They only cost about $1.19 for 4 strips, and are easy to hang up.

        Also a few chickens help. We have barn swallows and chickens so the flies don't stand much of a chance anymore.


        • #5
          I use the Country Vet fly spray misters. They help a great deal. On days like this (100 degrees in the shade, high humidity) the flies are tough to beat, but these misters certainly make it much better.
          "We need a pinned ears icon." -MysticOakRanch


          • #6
            My shoer recommended Country Vet's CVD-80.

            It comes in aerosol 18oz or 24oz cans, cheapest at TSC.

            I use it both on the horses & as a premise spray and it works pretty darn good.

            jazzrider - I may appropriate your hook & fan idea!
            It sure would be nice to sit - barncat-on-lap - in a breeze, even if I have to maufacture that breeze!
            *friend of bar.ka*RIP all my lovely boys, gone too soon:
            Steppin' Out 1988-2004
            Hey Vern! 1982-2009, Cash's Bay Threat 1994-2009
            Sam(Jaybee Altair) 1994-2015


            • #7
              My plan of attack: I add one home made fly catcher to each stall hung so that it is about 4 inches off the floor. A mike jug works well or even a water bottle, tape it black or use a dark colored jug, cut some holes in it along the side, add 1/3 water and what ever is oldest in the fridge that will stink and within minutes you will catch your first fly. I LOVE emptying them, it feels so satisfying! You can also buy them at the local TSS for about 10.00 with fly attracting stuff that stinks unlike anything I'd ever care to smell.......... I also hang a fly tape on the water bucket hook, get tons of flies on those. If I feel really vengeful I go to the barn at night with a fly swatter. The flies are on the stall walls and slow & stupid in the evening, very satisfying......

              My chickens are also a big help.

              Yes its kind of like Groundhog Day with the flies and me...........


              • #8
                I use Max Force fly bait as opposed to the bags of stinky stuff. It has no smell, and is amazing. I sprinkle some in my wheelbarrow and flies drop dead in less than 30 seconds of landing on the pink snack food.
                Other fly weapons consist of a feed through as well as my flock of chickens. They help a ton.
                "Sometimes you just have to shut up and color."


                • #9
                  I have seventeen horses.... dumpster for manure gets picked up 2x/week, I doubled the recommended Fly Predator order, I have Fly Stick Jrs up in front of each stall, and three or four StarBar trap jugs hanging around the outside of the barn. Occassionally I spray the stalls and aisle with commercial aerosol spray from Tractor Supply, since our fly spray system is down at the moment. Flies have gone from intolerable to barely noticeable!

                  Third Charm Event Team


                  • #10
                    Dairy farmers use huge fly strips - 1' wide and about six feet long - collects thousands of flies, but gets dusty and not so sticky in a short while.

                    Feed through - now why can't I get it here. Any Canadians know?

                    Fly bait - afraid of that stuff, not sure where to dispose of it or put it where nothing can get it.
                    Proud member of People Who Hate to Kill Wildlife clique


                    • #11
                      Nobody answered my thread on cedar oil - anybody use it as a wall spray?
                      Save me the $ of trying it myself....that's why I come to COTH for your combined advice.
                      Proud member of People Who Hate to Kill Wildlife clique


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by ThirdCharm View Post
                        I have seventeen horses.... dumpster for manure gets picked up 2x/week,
                        That's exactly what I do and I have nary a fly around and haven't for years. You can keep your barn spotless, but if you have a manure pile close by, you're screwed.


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by 2DogsFarm View Post
                          jazzrider - I may appropriate your hook & fan idea!
                          It sure would be nice to sit - barncat-on-lap - in a breeze, even if I have to maufacture that breeze!
                          Absolutely. I use it mostly when I'm doing supplements, but it also comes in handy when I use the leaf blower in the feed room -- the fan is positioned so it helps blow the dust out the door.

                          Somewhere in my tack room I have an unused Country Vet fly spray mister. I'll have to dig it out and give it a try. Maybe put it in my old guys stall...
                          "Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall." - Confucious
                          <>< I.I.


                          • #14
                            I use Fly Eliminators and have barely seen a single fly this year. They don't help w/ the deer flies, horse flies or anything big like that but they help a ton w/ regular flies.
                            "When a horse greets you with a nicker & regards you with a large & liquid eye, the question of where you want to be & what you want to do has been answered." CANTER New England


                            • #15
                              I love my fly eliminators I also use the quickstrike fly strips for the few survivors.


                              • #16
                                Started my horses on Equitrol II about 1-1/2 months ago. Was late into the season, already had lots of flys in barn, but decided to go ahead and try it anyway. After 1-1/2 months I am absolutely amazed. Crossing my fingers on this one but between this week's farrier visit and 6 weeks ago, my farrier was amazed. Never had to bring out the fly spray. Just weren't any flys. Am loving this since my horses have had to stay in during the day ALOT recently with the extreme heat we've had here in Ga. Used to be they either had to brave the extreme heat or the flys in the barn (and, I keep my barn very clean, too). Now, when they are in, peaceful no fly problem. Just crossing my fingers!!!!!!!


                                • #17
                                  We have a fly spray system built through the entire barn. Each stall has a nozzle you can turn on or off as well as the barn aisle. We can set the timer to come on every hour or every few hours from 15 seconds to 2 minutes at each spray/misting. It helps take care of flies, spiders, and any other insect problems one may find in a barn. Well worth the money and you find you use less fly spray on the horses. We also make sure the stalls and barn aisle are kept clean and manure buckets are removed away from the barn. It has been well worth the money to install the fly spray system in the barn and the horses know it's there and beg at the gate to come in when the bugs get bad especially on very hot days.

                                  Supposedly having a fly spray system keeps the birds out of your barn but since this past bad winter we had it's the first time we've really had bird problems in the barn. We have a barn cat but I think she'd rather starve than have to hunt and kill something. She is our princess barn kitty and does not understand her job at all so she is spoiled and served her meals in a pretty bowl near her bed and fresh water. So if there are other ideas for dealing with unwanted birds in the barn, please share. Thank you.


                                  • #18
                                    We have the fly spray system installed also. Love it. Our barn is fly free.
                                    hunter/jumper ponies


                                    • #19
                                      Nobody answered my thread on cedar oil - anybody use it as a wall spray?
                                      Save me the $ of trying it myself....that's why I come to COTH for your combined advice.
                                      I've never tried cedar oil. But I do spray my barn...walls, floor and especially doorway and window sills. I usually use vinegar in a spray bottle. Or else pine sol, which also works great and tends to not make the barn smell like a giant salad.
                                      Or even vetrolin...the sharp smell of that seems to keep flies away. Although I prefer to not use that because it's not as cheap as Pine Sol or vinegar and I have better alternative uses for that.
                                      Many flies are attracted by smells...either the scent coming off of manure or feeds or the smell of the carbon dioxide mammals exhale. Covering the smell of those things (or eliminating them like manure) will cut down drastically on flies inside a barn.

                                      I rarely ever find any flies in my barn unless it's a few that zoomed in and then spend the rest of their time battering themselves against a window pane. Those I just spritz with fly spray and kill them.
                                      You jump in the saddle,
                                      Hold onto the bridle!
                                      Jump in the line!


                                      • #20
                                        fly stray system!

                                        I'm with you Sugarbrook, and veezee. I installed a flyspray system (very easy to do) and can't believe I went so long without it. Even the farrier commented that I have the most fly-free barn she shoes in. As an added benefit, the severe culicoides allergy in horse has vastly improved.

                                        It's been worth every penny (and I don't have many of those!)