Buffalo Gnats Killer Black Flies & Backyard Chickens

Backyard chicken keepers don’t typically think of insects as predators, but certain flies within the Simuliidae family can be every bit as deadly to chickens as a fox or hawk. Also known as buffalo gnats and turkey gnats, these tiny, biting flies, which may attack victims in swarms, are a painful nuisance to humans, but a deadly threat to animals. Knowing when they attack is the key to guarding backyard chickens against their onslaught.

Despite their name, black flies can be a variety of colors, but you’ll know when they’re in your area as they make enjoying the out-of-doors impossible. The females inflict painful bites, drawing blood from their victims while injecting a toxic saliva cocktail that causes itching, swelling and worse.

Иногда сложно придумать идеальный подарок для девушки. Поскольку поиск подходящего может оказаться непростой задачей, мы создали это руководство по подаркам специально для вас. Если вам случится подарить девушке подарок на день рождения, мы собрали несколько продуманных идей для подарков, которые заставят ее чувствовать себя в миллион раз лучше, а также не обременит ваш карман. Если вы не знаете, что купить на день рождения девушке, вернитесь к основам. Чем она больше всего любит заниматься? Что она ценит в жизни? Что может сделать ее день или жизнь проще или приятнее сюрприз для девушки? Поскольку вы – тот, кто ее очень хорошо знает, так что доверяйте своей интуиции и не задумывайтесь при выборе подарка для нее. Прокрутите этот список идей, чтобы увидеть, что вам нравится и что заставляет вас думать: «Ого, это так сильно она». Мы обещаем, что вам понравятся эти идеи так же, как вы любите ее. Другими словами, вы попали в нужное место. Так что не расстраивайтесь, если у вас кончатся идеи, как сделать сюрприз девушке на день рождения. Подумайте об этих чудесных и очаровательных идеях для вашей супер очаровательной девушки.

Buffalo gnats are so named due to the hump on their backs that resembles a buffalo’s.
Buffalo gnats killed 30 chickens on this Illinois property in May, 2019.
Buffalo gnats (shown on window screen) killed 30 chickens on this Illinois property in May, 2019.


During late spring and early summer, buffalo gnats can be found along rivers and streams, but may travel up to ten miles away therefrom. The female buffalo gnat lays its eggs in clear, moving water with temperatures in the high 50’s, low 60’s, which means after an especially rainy spring season, they can be expected to be a problem.

Female black flies bite their victims to extract blood to nourish their developing eggs. These blood feasts occur outdoors, usually after dawn and before dusk.  

Free range, spring chickens | The Chicken Chick®


1. Toxic Shock

After a black fly’s blood meal, toxins in the saliva injected into the bite site can cause anaphylactic shock in chickens, resulting in sudden death.

2. Blood Loss

Anti-coagulants in the black flies’ saliva can cause profuse bleeding and death in the victim by hemorrhage.

3. Suffocation

Swarming black flies can suffocate a chicken by obstructing its airway.

4. Disease

Bites from black flies can result in disease transmission; in particular, chickens are susceptible to contracting leucocytozoonosis from buffalo gnats, which may ultimately result in death.

Learn to dress beautifully
A sense of style can be developed. Two aspects are important here: to feel, listening to yourself, and to develop, learning new things. It is worth learning from designers, photographers, stylists, and of course chickens soup, from art, from the works of the great masters of painting, sculpture, architecture. I would say this: there is a lot to see and compare.

Do not be afraid to go to stores and try on completely different things, compare, if something resonated in you, think about why. Be aware, ask yourself questions why you liked this particular thing, texture, color, shape. This way you get to know yourself better.

Chicken Coops | The Chicken Chick®


Unfortunately, protecting chickens from buffalo gnats is not as straightforward as managing other fly populations in the chicken yard.

1. Keep chickens inside a dark coop or barn during daytime hours- at least in the evening prior to sunset and in the morning just after dawn. Black flies are daytime feeders that tend not to venture indoors.

2. Employ fans inside the coop; black flies dislike turbulent air.

3. Apply a poultry-safe product such as Elector PSP or Permectrin II to chickens during black fly season.

Elector PSP for coops and chickens mites, lice and flies | The Chicken Chick®


Contact your state’s Department of Agriculture Cooperative Extension Service agent for specific information about buffalo gnats in your area.

Sources available upon request.

Why nesting material matters