Thursday, October 24, 2013

Marigot Bay: The Bay of Flies

Flies are perhaps the most disgusting and dirty creatures on the planet, in my opinion.  Worse than cockroaches, I think.  I detest them and their presence - especially on a boat.  Luckily, we don't deal with flies too much out here and I honestly can't remember the last time we had a real problem with them.  In fact, I don't think we have ever had so many flies aboard our boat as we did this past week in Marigot Bay.  We have good reason to believe that this recent influx has everything to do with bad timing (we've been here twice before and never experienced this problem); it's been incredibly rainy, warm and we're pretty sure our visit has coincided with a mating season of sorts (we'll spare you the details).  As such, our boat has been overrun - literally completely abuzz - with an insane number of flies the first morning we awoke, and every morning to late afternoon that followed (they seem to "go to sleep" around dusk).  It was unbelievable and almost unbearable.  They were everywhere.

Being the person I am, I immediately hit the internet to find some solutions.  I am here to report that eucalyptus oil, peppermint oil and hanging bags filled with water (with and without pennies) do not work.  At all.  None of these "deterrents" put even the tiniest dent in our growing fly colony.  What I did discover was that they seem to hate bleach and as such, our boat has never been so clean.  Keeping the screens up, food stuff covered, and a mosquito net over our companionway also seemed to keep them at bay.   In addition, Scott miraculously found a single roll of fly tape (with sticky stuff that must have been developed by NASA) tucked deep within a drawer and, after three full days, it has now accumulated over sixty flies.  It's like Christmas every morning when we do the daily fly count and discover we've captured more than the day before.  I know, we're sick.

So yeah.  It's been a little Lord of the Flies around here lately...moving on to Rodney Bay shortly then...Martinique!


Laura and Hans said...

We were plagued with flies while in the Chesapeake back in 2010, we actually had contests to see who could kill the most. We had fly strips but the only thing they caught was us! Strangely though, we realized all the fly carcasses were disappearing and then we caught Wilbur smacking his lips. Just like a vacuum cleaner he was sucking them up. The very same dog who won't eat his kibble without whip cream on top will inhale dead flies? Go figure.

Mark and CIndy - s/v Cream Puff said...

Counting flies - sounds like a wonderful "Christmas morning".

So I'm wondering now - what were Christmas' like at your house growing up? - LOL

Mark and Cindy
s/v Cream Puff

Mike M. said...

Lovely flies....hehe. Seriously, that stinks.

Reminds me of when I spent 4 months in the United Arab Emirates (in 1996) when I was in the Air Force. There were SO many flies, it was crazy! You could always pick out the new guys because they were constantly swatting at them. After about two weeks I guess we get acclimated to them and don't even bother swatting anymore, even when they're landing all over our arms and faces.

Don't miss it at all!


Anonymous said...

So are you renaming the bay Magot Bay?

Sainted said...

Here's a fly story.

I was delivering a boat up the ICW and on a windless day on Delaware Bay, the boat was inundated with black flies, despite the fact that I was miles from shore (!? *&!@!). Unlike normal house flies, these bit, and they were driving me to distraction. I mean, I could not concentrate on anything without being painfully interrupted every minute.

Finally, thankfully, the breeze started to pick up at about mid day, and I figured it would blow the little buggers away, but I noticed that they were going to ground in the cockpit and the lee of the cabin house, so I started swatting at them to get them up into the breeze and over the side.

In the process, I noticed that some of them were going over the lee side of the boat and disappearing, so over the side I looked. There they all were, clinging to the lee side of the hull, hundreds and hundreds of flies.

I went crazy with rolled up newspaper, hanging over this side flailing away. I'm glad there wasn't anyone out there to see me. I'm sure I looked demented, leaning over the side of the boat smacking the hull. What's he doing? Flogging the boat to make it go faster? Giddy up!

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