Black flies

The daffodils finished blooming, the phoebes and the hummingbirds arrived on time, and then so did the black flies and mosquitos.  

Black flies and mosquitoes are the bane of country living in the northern parts of the U.S.  Everyone knows about mosquitoes, but only rural northerners experience black flies, unless you happen to visit during black fly season.  Black flies pack a bloody bite which itches terribly.  They swarm on you by the hundreds flying in your mouth, nose and eyes.  

Black flies hatch just when the weather is reliably enjoyable to wear shorts while you work in your yard, or try to sit in the sun and read a book.  They are especially bad if the day is humid and calm.

The general time period for black fly season is Mother’s Day to Father’s Day.  Wearing light colored clothing and covering every single part of your body is helpful.  Tucking in your shirt to your pants and tucking your pants into your socks can help prevent bites.  You can try a headnet or a hat with a brim and a sweatshirt hoodie.   All of these might be helpful, but they are terribly hot and can cause crabbiness!  

For years, I did not spend as much time outside as I wanted due to being tormented by the black flies and mosquitoes.  I have opened up my forested property a bit so that there is more breeze, more sun and a few less bugs.  I am also more judicious about which times to go and do outside things.

Moving around creates a breeze and so is helpful to avoid being swarmed.  I adopt the attention deficit gardening disorder in which I work in one area doing one task for a few minutes and then I move to another area and do a completely different task.  It is hard to break this habit once the black flies and mosquitoes have died out for the summer.  I sometimes have to run to get away from the bugs!

Getting outside on a daily basis and doing the things you enjoy is a great way to feel healthier and enjoy yourself at the same time.  

I wish you many happy sunny days!

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