Are you wondering why your Fly Predators haven't hatched yet and want to know how to help them hatch quicker? Jess our Fly Predator Scientist has the answers...
Why Fly Predator Hatch Times Vary
The species that comprise Fly Predators have a life cycle that is very dependent on overall average temperatures. At ideal conditions (around 85°F) it takes a minimum of 2 weeks for the Fly Predator to develop from egg to adult. At much cooler temperatures, they can take 6 weeks or more to hatch.
Generally, we try to send out Fly Predators that have already been incubated for about a week, so that in the warm summer months, they will begin hatching within 5 days of arrival. However, temperatures during travel and temperatures where they are being kept can have large impacts on how quickly Fly Predators hatch. During the first shipment of the season, it’s not unusual for your Fly Predators to take 10 to 14 days after arrival to emerge. It’s much faster than that during the heat of August.
How Do I Help My Fly Predators Hatch Quicker?
If your weather is warm and you want to make sure your Fly Predators hatch as quickly as possible, keep them at a consistently warm temperature once you receive them. Don’t put them in direct sun as this can make them too hot while in the bag. On top of a refrigerator is a cozy place, but write a note so you don’t forget them.
If your weather is cooler than normal, particularly if you have a chance of freezing night time temperatures, you will want to slow down the hatching of your Fly Predators. If they traveled through cool temperatures on their way to you (which often happens in the early spring and late fall), even once kept consistently warm, it may take 2 weeks or more for your Fly Predators to hatch. If kept outside once they arrive, and night time temperatures are still falling down into the 50’s, this could also result in delayed hatching, even if daytime temperatures are getting into the 70’s or higher. You can match the speed of emergence to match your weather, which is also how quickly your pest flies will be emerging.
Bottom line: don’t worry if your Fly Predators don’t hatch right away in the spring and fall. Try to keep them in a consistently warm location, such as on top of a refrigerator or other electrical appliance that generates a little heat (just don’t cook them).
If you're not happy with your fly spray, Bye Bye Insects™ is one to try next! It's based principally on Essential Oils and it's the first essential oil product to work comparable to synthetic chemical pesticides like Pyrethroids. There's lots to love and it smells great too!
Don’t take just our word for it, below is a survey from 2019 customers on what they thought of Bye Bye Insects. By contrast, have you ever seen a fly spray manufacturer publish a customer satisfaction survey?
Spalding Labs has been doing detailed surveys and publishing the results with Fly Predators since 2004. This premier year with our Bye Bye Insects survey follows this tradition and we've had almost 1,100 responses so far. The vast majority of Bye Bye Insect customers like it, a LOT!
If you use fly spray, give Bye Bye Insects a try next year! You can read more about Bye Bye Insects by CLICKING HERE.
Actual results from our survey are below.
Absorbine’s UltraShield Green and Red, Farnam’s Tri-Tec14 and Bronco, Pyranha’s Spray & Wipe, SmartPak’s OutSmart, Spalding’s Bye Bye Insects are trademarks of those respective companies.
Fall is upon us, so Winter won't be far behind. Soon we'll need to batten down the hatches and close up everything to keep our horses as warm and cozy. When you couple being all closed in for winter with sweaty saddle pads, moist leather, urine and manure you’re in for some serious “barn odors” that are far from cozy. Bad barn smells are one factor but also consider yours and your horse's respiratory health. Fresh, clean air is a key component of that. Here’s 5 tips to help you keep your barn smelling like roses (well maybe not roses per se but at least not stinky winter “barn odor” smells) all winter long!
1. Fresh Air. Check your stable for proper ventilation. Without creating a massive draft, crack windows and stable doors at least for a short portion of each day to allow for fresh air flow through your barn.
2. Sufficient Bedding. Yes, proper bedding is costly but this is not a place to cut corners in the winter months when horses are standing in their stalls more often than not. Whether you bed on straw, shavings, or pellets make sure you have a sufficient amount of bedding to absorb urine in your stalls. Investing in quality stall mats can also mitigate the amount of bedding needed thus saving your expense on bedding in the long run.
3. Clean Up. Pick urine and manure from your stalls daily then spray Bye Bye Odor on the urine spots. Bye Bye Odor will eliminate the ammonia that is the byproduct of the decomposition of urine. You might think your barn smells fine. To really know how bad the Ammonia smell might be, get down at floor level where your horses noses spend a great deal of time and take a whiff. Ammonia is heavier than air so is worse down lower. It doesn't have to be this way. Ammonia not only smells bad but is detrimental to respiratory health. Bye Bye Odor eliminates the ammonia but likewise it has a light, refreshing, pleasant smell on its own.
4. Water Buckets. Don’t just refill water buckets but make a habit of dumping, rinsing and then refilling at least every other day. This is a year round tip. If you are just constantly refilling buckets with grain and hay remnants floating around it will sour. Encourage your horses to drink more water by keeping a fresh, clean supply readily available for them.
5. Blanket Maintenance. Try using a light fleece sheet under your winter blankets that you can wash easily and that will dry fast for reuse. This will keep the layer closest to your horse fresh plus wick away any sweat that might accumulate if they do get too hot, and cut down your grooming time by always having a clean layer on them. Winter blankets usually only get washed 1 or 2 times a season. If your horse rolls in manure and urine, spray those spots with Bye Bye Odor on your blanket and straps, let it sit overnight, then wash to neutralize the smell.
I will be forever grateful to the Spalding Labs company for their Fly Predators. I have previously described how our relationship began many years ago. It was 1978. I had read about the Predator Flies, and my practice partner, Dr. Larry Dresher, was using them satisfactorily.
It was noon, on an August day. The temperature was over one hundred degrees Fahrenheit. I was at a large stable in an isolated canyon, working on a mare’s leg, trying to determine the cause of her lameness.
I suddenly became aware of the lack of flies. I asked the ranch manager who was standing nearby, “What are you using for fly control?” I assumed it was some kind of insecticide spray.
“Fly Predators,” she replied.
“That’s all?” I asked. “No insecticides?”
“Nope,” she responded. “Just Predators works great!”
I ordered Fly Predators the next day and have been a user ever since.
My place is in an isolated canyon, but off from the marine air layer that gives Western California its benevolent climate, summer temperatures reach extreme daily highs and consequently, the warm season (half the year) has a nasty fly season. The regular use of Spalding Fly Predators has tremendously reduced the fly problem. (I have persuaded my neighbors to use them too. They have horses, cattle, goats, and even emus that the coyotes haven’t yet wiped out.)
Spalding now has several other products available. They include various fly traps and sprays and Bye Bye Odor. I hope that Spalding achieves the success with these items that they did with their Fly Predators. I have become a loyal customer.
Lulu was the only Donkey I have owned. She was one of my patients in a petting zoo, which was part of the facilities at a children’s summer camp in the mountains not far from my home.
The petting zoo included miniature horses, pot-bellied pigs, lambs, goats, ducks and Lulu.
Lulu was a full sized burro. The camp adopted her as a foal for the children to enjoy, but when she was two years of age the camp director told me that she had grown “too big” for the petting zoo and that he wanted to donate her to somebody who would provide her with a good home.
I had been thinking for some time of getting a donkey to control the weed growth in our highly inflammable canyon, especially outside my fence lines on our neighbors’ ranch properties. So, I said, “I’ll be glad to take her. She can be good company for my horses.”
That’s how I came to own Lulu, and she came to educate me, to understand the donkey mind and how it differs from the horse’s mind, and, importantly, she helped me to understand and appreciate the hybrid mule.
For example, as soon as I got her home I got a long rope, attached it to her halter, and tied her to an oak tree. She immediately started grazing the tall spring grass around the oak. I stood by with a sharp knife, ready to help her if she became entangled. I knew that, although halter broke, she had never before been staked out on a long tie rope.
It took about 15 minutes before she stepped into a loop of the rope. Then after another 5 or 10 minutes, the rope encircled another leg. As she moved out away from the tree the slack came out of the rope and tightened around her legs. Soon it disabled her. She went down. A horse, two years of age and never having been staked out, would have struggled and probably suffered rope burns or worse.
Lulu, however, quietly sniffed and examined the ropes encircling her legs, gently tried to free them by moving them, and then gave up. She sighed, laid her head on the ground, sighed again and then just relaxed.
Her behavior was so different than that of a horse experiencing a new and incapacitating situation that I marveled at the good judgment this species was capable of.
A few years later, when I became a mule owner, breeder, trainer, and admirer, this experience with Lulu, and several others led to my attitude towards mules; I often say, “I love horses! I respect mules!”
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