Where are the botflies located?

Asked 08-Mar-2018
Updated 15-Jul-2023
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Botflies are a family of parasitic flies that are found in tropical and subtropical regions around the world. There are over 150 different species of botflies, and they are known to infest a wide variety of animals, including mammals, birds, reptiles, and amphibians.

In the Americas, the most common botfly is Dermatobia hominis, also known as the human botfly. This fly is native to Central and South America, but it has also been introduced to other parts of the world, including the United States. The human botfly lays its eggs on mosquitoes, and when the mosquito bites a human, the eggs hatch and the larvae burrow into the skin. The larvae then live inside the skin for 2-4 weeks, feeding on the host's flesh.

Other common botflies include:

  • Cuterebra spp. These botflies are found in North America, and they are known to infest a variety of animals, including rabbits, rodents, and livestock. The larvae of these flies typically burrow into the skin of their hosts, but they can also infest the nasal passages, mouth, and ears.
  • Oestrus ovis. This botfly is found in Europe, Asia, and Africa, and it is known to infest sheep and goats. The larvae of this fly typically burrow into the skin of their hosts, but they can also infest the nasal passages, mouth, and ears.
  • Hypoderma spp. These botflies are found in Europe, Asia, and North America, and they are known to infest horses, cattle, and other livestock. The larvae of these flies typically burrow into the skin of their hosts, but they can also infest the nasal passages, mouth, and ears.

Botflies can cause a variety of health problems, including pain, swelling, and infection. In some cases, the larvae can burrow so deep into the skin that they can only be removed surgically. If you think you have a botfly infestation, it is important to see a doctor right away.

Here are some tips to help you avoid botfly infestation:

  • Avoid areas where botflies are common.
  • Wear long sleeves and pants when you are in areas where botflies are common.
  • Use insect repellent that contains DEET.
  • Check your skin for botfly eggs or larvae after you have been in an area where botflies are common.

If you find a botfly egg or larva on your skin, it is important to remove it as soon as possible. You can do this by carefully picking it off with tweezers or by applying a topical treatment that will kill the larva.