Wednesday, October 01, 2008

The warblers vs. the cluster flies

The cluster flies were going nuts last week when the temps were warm. Don't know what cluster flies are? Lucky you! Visit here. There are many joys to country living, but this isn't one of them: bazillions of disgusting flies clinging to the side of your house outside, and the windows inside. Flies dying all over the windowsills, making hideous noises as they spin around on their backs. A thick layer of dead flies at every sill, which you have to vacuum up as often as possible. EEEEYUW! They are like stoned houseflies, sluggish and mellow but equally revolting.

I was therefore very pleased last week to see the yellow-rumped warblers (correct me if I'm wrong, HWB, are these females?) coming out in force during their migration to help eradicate these disgusting flies from the outside of our house.

Note the yellow rump:

And where is she off to?

The screen of our front porch, which was swarming with flies... on the INSIDE.

...which caused the warblers a certain amount of frustration, since they were on the OUTSIDE.

"Hmmmm.... why can't I catch any of these suckers?"

Not the greatest shot, but I was taking photos through screen...

Can you see her hopping along the outside windowsill, between the cat shelves (hmm, guess I am going to have to get a third catshelf now!)

"OOOOH! There it is! I got it, I got it!"

But no, she didn't have it. For several hours, they valiantly tried to catch the cluster flies infecting my front porch, with limited success (some flies were on the outside of the screen.) They eventually got frustrated but happily realized that our house siding was COVERED in flies, and so moved on to an easier meal.

Thank you, warblers!!

And now I await the ladybug invasion, which is less revolting than the cluster fly one, and requires less vacuuming.

PS: I really hate it when a cluster fly drowns in my water glass during the night, and I don't notice it until AFTER I've had a swig in the morning (before I put on my glasses.) UGH!


  1. Anonymous1:26 pm

    How strange that they are earthworm parasites! whoda thunk. Now that I see the picture, I recall those damn things.

    The bird pics are EXCELLENT!!!! in spite of the screen! :) You have captured ..well what seems to be the birds' frustration with the flies on the wrong side of the screen.

    Good that they found plenty of them elsewhere.

  2. I love warblers! It was so cute to see them peeking in your screen to get at those flies!

  3. Duncan was hunting a big fat fly all day yesterday. I was watching him on the cam. He finally got it at 5pm last night. Down in one gulp!

    He said it tasted like chicken.

  4. Knatolee, thanks for all of your great comments on my blog. I've really enjoyed yours too, your place looks like it's such great place to be. I'll keep stopping back and you do the same...and congrats on your new family member...such a pretty little kitty. Peace.

  5. EEEEeewww! I HATE flies. But it's good that the Warblers had an easy dinner.

  6. Naomi says "Go Duncan!" She rivals the warblers as a fly killer (and eater, blech!)


Thank you for all your comments, which I love to read!