Tsetse flies

Kevin Peacocke

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These creatures, size for size, have probably had more of an effect in Africa than any other single bug or animal. Large swathes of the bush, fortunately, remained largely untouched because of them, and in the attempts to erradicate the tsetse large wild animal populations were culled. That didn't work either, so vacant areas remained to be designated as parks.
On our recent Zambezi valley trip in an open vehicle the pointless swashing and swatting began soon after the second Parks gate and by the time we got to camp the welts were up. The camp staff of course live there, the guides drive around every day, so what is their secret? Deet? Long pants and veils?
Ellie dung burners! One accompanied us on all game drives, you just keep feeding it, works a treat.
Upon leaving they gifted us one and we kept it alight all the way back to Harare, not because there were any more pesky flies, but for that delicious aroma, like coffee on steroids.
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Is there any other type of repellent recommended or proven effective?
 
I have not seen a Tse-Tse fly in a long time, despite that I was in Zimbabwe and Mozambique several times in the last decades. As far as I can remember, the last time I saw this flies was 1994 in Ouganda. Maybe the eradication attempt did something.
 
The Tsetses had a major impact on the history of Africa. When I was much younger I was amazed about the agricultural potential of Central Africa after my first flight over Zambia with a Cessna. I asked my father (who has a major interest in history) why our ancestors stopped trekking at the Limpopo, as South Africas agricultural potential is much lower. His answer was that the Tsetses flies to the North of the Limpopo prevented Livestock farming, and hence our people stopped there. It was only hunters (with a few exceptions) that ventured further north. I am always glad when I get to a area where the Tsetses (who love me) bite, as I know that they are slowing the inevitable slow advance of civilisation.
 
My last safari to Coutada 9 in Moz they did the same thing, works like magic. Those bugs are annoying. I also used skin so soft bug repellant/sunscreen and only had been bitten twice by the end of a 10 day safari, where i had missed application.......and the place was alive with tsetse flies
 
Luckily, I have not encountered the Tsetse.

The word "Tsetse" actually means "fly" in one of the native languages. So when one says "Tsetse fly" they are actually saying "fly fly."
 
When you hit them, they can be a biblical plague. The bordering forests of the Zambezi Delta swamp can be alive with them. My experience has been they are prevalent in buffalo country north of South Africa. They tend to hit in squadron strength. For a km you are fine and then suddenly swarmed. We kept a green OD can of insect spray in the cab and the bed of the cruiser that looked like a castoff from a Soviet chemical munitions depot. Even wearing long pants doesn't always work. I have had them crawl up my leg and nail my inner thigh. Biblical.
 
I always wondered what it smelled it- thanks for the description. I assumed it would smell like sh#t :ROFLMAO:
 
Last month when I was in Uganda I kept feeling something in my pants hitting my leg, I thought it was the zipper because my pants were those zip off kind of things. After awhile when I sat down I felt a tsetse fly in my pants, crushed it, then when I looked, this is the blood from one damn tsetse fly!! Those buggers can be maddening.
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On another forum it is reported that Avon skin so soft and deet in a 50-50 mix make a passable repellent. The little buggers bite is unmistakeable. Tough too......
Bruce
 
On another forum it is reported that Avon skin so soft and deet in a 50-50 mix make a passable repellent. The little buggers bite is unmistakeable. Tough too......
Bruce
Tried both. None of it worked.
 
Last month when I was in Uganda I kept feeling something in my pants hitting my leg, I thought it was the zipper because my pants were those zip off kind of things. After awhile when I sat down I felt a tsetse fly in my pants, crushed it, then when I looked, this is the blood from one damn tsetse fly!! Those buggers can be maddening.
View attachment 599714
Look at those muscles! You must work out a lot. :D. Hey, if I posted a photo of my bare calf, people would gasp. My verygross veins are very scary! No shorts for me.

Wait ... that's not your calf. That fly was awful close to striking the mother lode! Yikes!
 
Tsetse flies didn’t seem to like me, they would attack everyone else flying around like biplanes attacking King Kong on the Empire State Building and leave me alone, so I actually love them they are the best defense against habitat distruction and human/domestic animal take over of some tremendous game country.
 
When you hit them, they can be a biblical plague. The bordering forests of the Zambezi Delta swamp can be alive with them. My experience has been they are prevalent in buffalo country north of South Africa. They tend to hit in squadron strength. For a km you are fine and then suddenly swarmed. We kept a green OD can of insect spray in the cab and the bed of the cruiser that looked like a castoff from a Soviet chemical munitions depot. Even wearing long pants doesn't always work. I have had them crawl up my leg and nail my inner thigh. Biblical.

Does this include the Caprivi strip, where I am headed to in 2025?

My wife and I did a photo safari at Chobe, Botswana, along to the Chobe River and I don't recall any problem with flies. Lots of lions and everything else, but no flies.
 
Does this include the Caprivi strip, where I am headed to in 2025?

My wife and I did a photo safari at Chobe, Botswana, along to the Chobe River and I don't recall any problem with flies. Lots of lions and everything else, but no flies.
I have never seen a fly or tick in the Caprivi. Mosquitos after sunset can be impressive depending on time of year.
 
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Pot of burning elephant dung for the bed of the truck.
 
Does this include the Caprivi strip, where I am headed to in 2025?

My wife and I did a photo safari at Chobe, Botswana, along to the Chobe River and I don't recall any problem with flies. Lots of lions and everything else, but no flies.
I don't recall tsetse flies in the east end of the strip. We didn't have any in the west end of the strip. I have not been in the middle.
 
So, industrial and commercial products are ineffective for tse ste flies.
Smoke for burning ele dung is effective?!
Is this 100% ?

Is there any other fuel/smoke shown effective? Like acacia wood smoke or similar?
 

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