Black Fly - Protection
Although the Pennsylvania Black Fly Suppression Program is effective at controlling adult black fly populations in participating counties, here is a list of some things that you can do to help protect yourself:
- Avoid black fly infested areas during daytime periods of peak adult activity.
- Schedule outdoor activities during mid-day hours, when black flies (gnats) are usually not as active.
- Stay indoors on warm, cloudy, humid summer days, and before summer thunderstorms, when gnats are most aggressive.
- Wear light-colored clothing because black flies are attracted to dark colors.
- Wear hats, pants and long-sleeved shirts for maximum skin protection, because black flies don’t bite through clothing.
- Tuck in shirts and pants to prevent adults from crawling under clothing.
- Wear glasses or goggles to help prevent adult black flies from entering your eyes.
- Additionally, an insect head net can be worn for protection in areas of high black fly populations.
- Use insect repellent products, such as DEET and citronella oil to deter black flies.
- Re-apply repellents every few hours to maintain maximum effectiveness.
- Remember that smoke from punk sticks, campfires and tobacco products repel black flies.
- Don’t wear perfumes, colognes, deodorants, hairsprays and other toiletries, which may attract black fly gnats.
- If you are bitten, avoid scratching, which can worsen allergic reactions to the bite.
- Contact your family physician if you experience an allergic reaction to black fly bites.