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3:14PM

Even I think this is a creepy little critter!

Regular as clockwork in early July this species appears on the walls of Watch Cottage. This is the wonderfully named sheep nostril fly (Oestrus ovis), a rare species which belongs to a group of insects known as 'bot' or 'warble'  flies. These sinister beasties are all internal parasites of mammals in one form or another and there is even a human bot fly whose larvae develop under the skin of their host causing painful, weeping pustules (not a grouping of words you want to see very often!). While there have been cases of human infection by Oestrus, as the name suggests it's usual host is the nasal cavities of sheep, where it can cause quite a bit of irritation and even occasional death!

 

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