Seasonal Parasite Control

Stomach Bots and Tapeworms


By Margaret Evans


As the season moves toward early fall, your parasite management program should give some attention to stomach bots and tapeworms. To control these parasites more effectively, it helps to understand their life cycles.   


Stomach Bots


Bot flies are honeybee-sized flies that attach their tiny yellow, orange, or cream-coloured eggs to the horse’s hair coat during summer and fall. The eggs are readily visible on most horses, especially those with dark coats. The larvae are triggered to hatch when the horse self-grooms or licks the site, generating warmth. The flies themselves are not a particular nuisance to horses; it is the ingestion of the larvae and their accumulation in the intestine that may create infestation problems.


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