© 2024 South Carolina Public Radio
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Warble flies

Eastern gray squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis) with tree squirrel botflies (Cuterebra emasculator)
Mary Keim
Eastern gray squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis) with tree squirrel botflies (Cuterebra emasculator)

Warble fly is a name given to the genus Hypoderma: large flies which are parasitic on cattle and deer. Other names include "heel flies", "bomb flies" and "gadflies", while their larvae are often called "cattle grubs" or "wolves." Common species of warble fly include Hypoderma bovis (the ox warble fly) and Hypoderma lineatum (the cattle warble fly) and Hypoderma tarandi (the reindeer warble fly). Larvae of Hypoderma species also have been reported in horses, sheep, goats and humans. They have also been found on smaller mammals such as dogs, cats, squirrels, voles and rabbits.

Stay Connected
Rudy Mancke served as naturalist and co-host of South Carolina ETV's <i>NatureScene</i>, which began its long run in 1978. His field trips, broadcast nationwide, earned him a legion of dedicated viewers. Rudy's knowledge of the complex inner-workings of different ecosystems and his great admiration for the natural world make him the perfect guide. In fact, the National Wildlife Federation and the Garden Club of America honored his commitment to resource conservation with special awards. After retiring from SCETV, Rudy went on to become naturalist-in-residence at the University of South Carolina, Columbia. He hosted SC Public Radio's <i>NatureNotes</i> from 1999 until his death in 2023 at age 78.