Subject: Please ID this bug
Geographic location of the bug: Saint Johns Florida
Time: 05:30 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman: Inhave a pesky, biting insect that looks like a fly, about the size of one and is as quick as one. The only thing is that it bites/stings. It has a touch of red on it and is a little larger than one. It’s very aggressive and leaves a big bump with it’s bite/sting.
How you want your letter signed: Quckly
While we empathize with your situation, we are nonetheless quite amused to learn that the common name of the Horse Fly, Diachlorus ferrugatus, that is troubling you is, according to BugGuide, the Yellow Fly of the Dismal Swamp. According to Featured Creatures: “The female yellow fly is one of the most serious biting fly pests wherever it occurs (males do not bite). It attacks man vigorously, and the bites are painful, often causing large and itchy swellings. Although it attacks throughout the day, it is most active during the late afternoon and on cloudy days. It is especially common near large bodies of water, but tends to remain in or near forests. It is one of the few tabanids that attacks indoors. All exposed parts of the victim’s body may be attacked, and since the flight is rather quiet, a person is not aware of the flies until the sharp pain of the bite is felt. Domestic animals, including dogs, are attacked readily, although the fly’s preference for shade makes it less of a pest to cattle and horses in open pastures. Flies are on the wing in Florida from March to November, although the peak season is April through June.” According to BugGuide: “one of the first horse fly species described from North America.”