Pests on Pasture: Horn Flies Aren't the Only Problem

Horn flies aren't the only pest affecting on-pasture cattle. Mosquitoes, ticks and fire ants may also be causing problems on your operation.
Pests on Pasture: Horn Flies Aren't the Only Problem

Horn flies cost the cattle industry an estimated $1 billion each year in losses due to the stress they inflict and cattle diseases they spread, inciting weight loss as high as 50 lbs. per animal. Controlling horn fly populations on your operation is imperative to healthy cattle, but unfortunately, horn flies are just one of the insects affecting beef cattle.


Because cattle often live and congregate closely together, ticks have the ability to multiply and spread rapidly--- allowing a few of the insects to quickly turn into a tick infestation on cattle. These blood-sucking insects spread diseases to both humans and cattle, hindering performance and bottom lines.

Crawling up long grasses and low brushes, ticks are able to find, jump and latch onto a host when they cross their path. Trimming and maintaining these areas can help limit these disease-spreading insects. For effective tick control, use a product like Prolate/Lintox-HD™ Insecticide. Able to be used as a pour-on, mist spray or in a backrubber, its synergized formulation provides effective treatment of ticks as well as horn flies, lice and mange mites on cattle.


Another blood-sucking pest on pasture is the mosquito. Able to develop in just a few inches of water, mosquito populations around cattle can multiply quickly when standing water is present on pastures. Large populations of mosquitoes on cattle can lead to irritated and restless animals and extensive blood loss, resulting in lowered productivity.

To control mosquitoes around cattle, remove stagnant water where mosquitoes breed. For remaining water, treat with Pre-Strike® Mosquito Torpedo® larvicide to prevent the development of mosquitoes in the water for up to two months.

To help manage on-cattle mosquitoes, apply the livestock mosquito control solution Starbar® UL-100 EC Insecticidal Spray by applying the directly onto the animals.

Fire Ants

Red imported fire ants are known for their painful bites and stings when they are disturbed. The presence of fire ant mounds in cattle pastures can lead to cattle disrupting the mound opening or foraging ants, causing the ants to attack. Fire ant bites on cattle can cause the animals to become restless and go off feed.

Control fire ants on pastures with Extinguish® Plus Fire Ant Bait. This effective bait sterilizes the queen and prevents rebound infestations while an adulticide kills problem worker ants.

Comprehensive insect control requires the right combination of products and best practices around an operation. Learn how to implement an effective integrated pest management strategy for cattle by watching our helpful video below.

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