Monday, November 28, 2011

Flies of the Season

And just how relevant might the insect world be to people besides entomologists or art students?  This article in the New York Times discusses the seasonal nuisance of flies, alas in the Home and Garden section of the paper. 

What to do about them? There are tricks the article discusses in some very nice entomological detail, but overall:

As the eminent British dipterologist Harold Oldroyd wrote in his 1964 classic, “The Natural History of Flies,” “A house or other building is therefore no more than a large fly-trap. It is found that the same building is infested year after year, while the house next door may be immune.” He added, “At present there is no known remedy for these visitations except to move.”

The author notes the following truth: 

Flies are, paradoxically, ubiquitous and mysterious. We see them. We hear them. We know next to nothing about them.

I should mention  that we have a passage by Oldroyd in our Insect Lives boook on p.118 on this very issue, the essay called "Swarms of Flies" (likely drawn from his book "the Natural History of Flies"). 


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