Fly Control: A Cow's Tail wont get the Job Done

May 14, 2021

Bill Towes
Countryside Feed Livestock Production Specialist
Flies…They might as well be a four-letter word. Although it is impossible to actually eliminate flies, we can’t just throw in the towel. It is our responsibility as cattle producers to practice good stewardship and help our cattle stay comfortable instead of battling these nasty pests, anything less is doing them a disservice. And when we do our job, it is flat out amazing to watch our cows do theirs!
Good fly control programs aren’t just a one-prong approach. Combining several of the following management suggestions is the best way to combat flies in late summer.
  • Feedthrough larvicides
You can put a dent in the number of flies on your operation by feeding Altosid® or Clarifly®. These products prevent larva from developing into adult biting flies. Reduced fly numbers are generally observed about 3 weeks after being introduced to cattle.
  • Limit environmental factors
When possible, clean up areas where cattle congregate. Cleaning dry lot pens and getting rid of unnecessary areas of standing water are good practices. This can be more difficult in pasture settings, but eliminating environmental factors that attract flies can make a big difference.
  • Fly tags
Fly tags are a great option for repeling face flies. Keep in mind when using this tool that they are only effective for about 60 – 90 days. If tags were put in before spring turn out, they will need to be ran back through the chute to put in new tags to be effective July through September.
  • Dust bags, back rubs, oilers
These options can be a cost-effective approach if they located in areas that all cattle are likely to travel frequently or congregate. Make sure to check these fly control tools often to make sure they are loaded up on insecticide.
  • Sprays
There are many fly sprays on the market that are very effective but require frequent application. This is a great option to use during regular pasture checks.
Cows standing in a corner, stomping flies are not eating, not milking well, giving up pounds of calf, and leaving dollars on the table in the long run. Contact your Countryside Feed representative to discuss developing a well-rounded fly control program.

Read More News

Aug 29,2022
Whether you are planning to early wean or stick to a traditional weaning period, making sure you are prepared can make a stressful time a little easier! Here are a few tips to prepare for weaning:
Aug 29,2022
Given the drought conditions in some locations this year, many producers may be asking themselves how to handle the annual forages they have standing in the field that may not have grown as much as would be expected under normal conditions. These drought stressed forages can be high in nitrates and may be potentially toxic to cattle.
Apr 28,2022
Capitalize on your forage management to optimize cattle nutrition.

Related Topics