California Riding Magazine • July, 2014

Pest Wars
Fighting flies in every stage of their development is the most
effective strategy.

Tired of using the same products for fly control with limited results? Concerned that the products you are using may be harsh on the environment and your horse? Some new products and procedures offered from ARBICO Organics™ can help you finish off this summer with maximum fly control and limit the cost to you, your horse, and the environment.

The most complete control of your fly population can only be achieved when all stages of the fly life-cycle are treated. Most items on the market that are commonly used to control flies focus only on the flying adult stage. However, flies have four stages of development. They begin in an egg stage and then hatch into juvenile larvae commonly called "maggots." Next, they pupate in dark "cocoon" like casings found in the ground and finally they will emerge as winged adults ready to pester you and your horse. The best fly management programs focus on these individual stages and pair products with good manure management.

Fly Control specialists at ARBICO Organics suggest a four-step program for best results. The first step is good manure management. Flies seek areas with manure because it provides them with needed moisture and nitrogen for survival and reproduction. Placing manure piles away from barns or homes will help to draw flies away. Regardless of how great you are at keeping things tidy, flies are resilient and will find breeding spots around watering and feeding areas and urination spots.

The next recommended steps will help with this issue and are for control of the larval or maggot stages and the developing pupal stages in the ground. While most people interested in natural fly control have heard of ARBICO Organics Fly Eliminators™, which stop flies in their developing stage, few are familiar with a newer product that attacks flies in the larval or maggot stage. ARBICO Organics' Beneficial Nematode is a unique organism that controls flies in the maggot stage. Getting rid of maggots is a very important step in putting a stop to flies before they even get their wings.

Beneficial Nematodes are live microscopic organisms (non-segmented round worms) that occur naturally in soil throughout the world and are parasitic to fly maggots. Once released, the nematodes attack fly maggots and other subterranean pests. Easily applied to treatment areas, they will seek out and enter maggots through various body openings or directly through their body wall. Once inside, the nematode releases a toxic bacterium which kills the host maggot within 24-48 hours. The bacteria create a food source and a hospitable environment for the nematodes to reproduce.

As the food resources within the dead pest become scarce, the nematodes exit and immediately begin searching for a new host. It's easy to apply nematodes to your property. Beneficial Nematodes are shipped in an easily dissolved clay formulation that is mixed with water. The solution can be applied to "hot spot" areas where flies are breeding such as compost and manure piles, around manure and urinating sites, and watering and feeding areas using a watering can, hose end, backpack or pump sprayer or through irrigation or misting systems.

Specifically for fly maggot control, ARBICO Organics recommends NemAttack™ Steinernema carpocapsae Beneficial Nematode variety. To finish off your complete natural fly control program, combine nematodes with Fly Eliminator for developing fly control and the ARBICO Organics Solar Fly Trap™ for chemical-free adult fly control.

Press release provided by ARBICO Organics. Products can be ordered online at or by calling 1-800-SOS-BUGS (1-800-767-2847).