The Aussie Salute – The Problem with the Aussie Flies
One thing that very few immigrants are really prepared for when they arrive in the heart of the summer in Australia is… the Aussie Flies!
The quicker you get the Aussie salute under control the better!
They say you you are tru-blu Aussie when you’ve swallowed a fly.
Well call me truer than blue! I swalled three in one day. My mouth was open, it was warm and I was gardening and the kamikaze flies went down my throat as fast as you can say, “Dêmmit!”
A fly is not just a fly in Australia. Nope, they come at different names and yes, sizes as well.
There are almost 20 000 species of flies in Australia, but only three are common enough for you to take notice of. They are the Bush fly, Biting fly and the House fly.
The Aussie Flies Out Bush
This pesky little bugger keeps gunning for your nose, eyes and mouth.
They’re attracted to secretions on the skin. Don’t worry, it will not bite you but will rather suck up the nutrients.
“Oh good!” said no one ever!
Am I the only one that sees the irony in the highest part of the food chain being degraded to a yummy treat for the ever so important fly?
These little babies are also not toilet trained and you may become a walking cess pool. (Too much information already?)
Take heart dear people, the little bush fly does not pose a great health risk.
When it is dry and the dung beetles can’t do their thing, because they hibernate when it is hot and dry, the Bush fly is quite a pest. It is not strange to see a person walking in front of you with about ten or twenty of them hitching a hike.
The Bush flies are the recyclers of Australia, and play a role in plants’ absorption of organic matter, pollination and the regulation of other fly populations.
The Aussie Flies – the Biting kind
Oi! Does its bite sting! I’ve been a smorgas board for one or two. They don’t transmit diseases, look like mini-helicopters and are busy where it is open and sunny. The two that took a bit of me with them accosted me on the crisp clear beaches of Esperance.
The worst of the Aussie Flies – The very despicable House Fly
Oh, how I hate thee!
Australia’s security doors are called “fly screens”. Yes, you need to be secured against these abominations! Forget the burglars, the flies are worse! Keep the flyscreens closed at all times.
At night as you lay yourself down to sleep, they fly past you and you can literally feel the wind from their wings. These guys are the bodybuilders of flies and they are not scared of anabolic steroids at all.
Rather keep your garbage bin outside. I once neglected to take the bag from my rubbish bin (the small one in the house). Actually I hoped that the man of the house would do his husbandly duties and do the smelly task. Well… the said man of the house walked into the kitchen where maggots have started to crawl out of the bin!
Let me tell you, Mortein Target DOES NOT KILL these atrocities. My Kirby worked overtime and the ones I was able to sweep into a bin only died when drowned/cooked in boiling water.
Now my bin is a plastic shopping bag which is chucked in the wheelie bin the moment it is full.
I hate the house flies. Absolutely hate them. They have a drone that reminds me of the vuvuzela.
How do you keep the flies at bay? Keep your flyscreens closed. Invest in flyspray. And do not, absolutely do not, leave food out. They lay their eggs quick as a flash! Trust me, I know!
Dear Migrant to the Great South Land,
Be prepared for the flies. Buy a hat with netting attached to it and leave your vanity in South Africa, because you are not going to look attractive at all, but it is that or the Aussie salute which many people mistake for a “hello” wave and you will be greeted left right and center.
Don’t breath through your mouth on a warm day.
May your early days be fly free.
See ya soon,