5
   

Fly Swatting 101

 
 
Reply Thu 28 Aug, 2008 11:23 pm
Prof Michael Dickinson, of the California Institute of Technology, has now issued advice for fly-catchers.

He said: “It is best not to swat at the fly’s starting position. Rather, aim a bit forward of that to anticipate where the fly is going to jump when it first sees your swatter.”

He used high-speed digital video to record the evasive maneuvers of fruit flies. In the slow-mo instant replay, the flies’ bodies react to a swatter well before their wings carry them to safety. Blessed with nearly 360 degree vision, the fly first gauges the position of the swatter, then prepares an escape within 200 milliseconds. When approached from the front, for example, a fly shifts its middle legs forward and leans back. If you sneak in from the side, the fly leans in the opposite direction. This positioning then lets the fly spring into a flight pattern that takes it out of the danger zone.
(With material from 'Scientific America'.)

http://i37.tinypic.com/2dlnhu9.jpg
Source: The Independent, 29.08.08, page 8

Online reports:
The Independent:
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/gotcha-how-to-swat-a-fly-and-know-that-it-will-die-912322.html
The Times:
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/uk/science/article4629543.ece

 
dlowan
 
  4  
Reply Fri 29 Aug, 2008 01:20 am
@Walter Hinteler,
Doh!

I don't need no smegging Sci Am to tell me how to swat flies!


I'm AUSTRALIAN!!!


And I have a very cool Alessi flyswat to prove it.

Mine is the one in the middle:


http://www.theperfectpad.co.uk/alessi_drskud_th.gif
margo
 
  3  
Reply Fri 29 Aug, 2008 01:37 am
@dlowan,
does it work!

I've only got one of those in the shape of Australia - and it misses mostly!

I imagine a good Italian one would be really something!
dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Fri 29 Aug, 2008 01:52 am
@margo,
It does.
0 Replies
 
hamburger
 
  1  
Reply Fri 29 Aug, 2008 11:05 am
@Walter Hinteler,
doen't anyone use the old-fashioned FLIT sprayer anymore ?
growing up in germany , it was our - the boys - job to go after anything flying with the FLIT .

http://www.kobold.com.cn/pro/flit_style_sprayer-2016-s.jpg

flypaper was also quite handy - but somewhat cruel by today's standards .
the trick was to unroll it properly so that it wouldn't stick to the curtains or kitchenlamp .
you also wouldn't want to set the soup pot under it - unless you wanted some meat in the soup .

http://www.humansbyumans.com/images/tear/fly-paper.jpg



0 Replies
 
cicerone imposter
 
  2  
Reply Fri 29 Aug, 2008 03:02 pm
I remember those sprayers; they were bad for our health. We breathed in all that spray, and did more damage to us than the flies. As for the swatter, I used to pay our kids .05c for every fly they hit. Now that they're all grown up, I'm back to that sport all by myself. Still miss 'em.
hamburger
 
  3  
Reply Fri 29 Aug, 2008 03:21 pm
@cicerone imposter,
Quote:
I remember those sprayers; they were bad for our health. We breathed in all that spray, and did more damage to us than the flies. As for the swatter, I used to pay our kids .05c for every fly they hit. Now that they're all grown up, I'm back to that sport all by myself. Still miss 'em.


looks like we are still around ... for the time being - GRIN !
do you miss the flies or the kids - MORE GRINS .
i'm sure your kids will be happy that you miss 'em and so will the flies - LOL !
take care !
hbg

ps what about flypaper - it was quite popular in germany , as kids we'd sometimes throw it at each other ... with lots of flies on it - GREAT FUN !
Walter Hinteler
 
  2  
Reply Fri 29 Aug, 2008 03:31 pm
@hamburger,
Certainly I remember the Flit-Spritze (grandfather/aunt had a drogerie).

And we still use the flypaper ...

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/d/d8/Fliegenfaenger.jpg/90px-Fliegenfaenger.jpg

... and it's still in stock at supermarkets!
hamburger
 
  2  
Reply Fri 29 Aug, 2008 04:22 pm
@Walter Hinteler,
walter :
as you no doubt know , almost all windows on this continent have window-screens .
visitors from europe - not knowing what it is - often ask : "why are the windows so dead looking ? " .
btw growing up in hamburg , we had window screens in our bedrooms that were put in for the summer . living in the port and having a large garden surrounding the house , there were plenty of insects happy to invade the house .
so every spring and fall there was the job of putting the big heavy beasts in and taking them out again .
hbg
ossobuco
 
  2  
Reply Fri 29 Aug, 2008 04:27 pm
@hamburger,
Hardly can click in to this thread.. horse flies love me.. nuff said.
Deet, deet, where's the deet?
JTT
 
  2  
Reply Fri 29 Aug, 2008 04:28 pm
Only when you can catch them in your hand, shall you advance, Grasshopper.
hamburger
 
  1  
Reply Fri 29 Aug, 2008 04:40 pm
@ossobuco,
from wiki :

Quote:
Flit is best known today because in 1928, when Standard Oil Company manufactured it, they promoted it with a very successful and long running advertising campaign. Theodor Seuss Geisel created the artwork for this campaign, years before he started writing the children's books that made him famous as Dr. Seuss. The ads typically contained the tagline

"Quick, Henry, the FLIT!"

and showed people threatened by whimsical, menacing insect-like creatures that will look familiar to fans of Dr. Seuss's later work. This advertising campaign continued for 17 years and made "Quick, Henry, the FLIT!" into a national catchphrase.



http://orpheus.ucsd.edu/speccoll/dsads/flit/flit.jpg

pretty neat , isn't it ?

0 Replies
 
roger
 
  2  
Reply Fri 29 Aug, 2008 04:42 pm
@JTT,
Sorry, Osso. Deet doesn't work on flies. They just don't have the precision guidance system of a mosquito, and can't be messed with.

Best flyswatter, by the way, has the cheap windowscreen mesh. I'm getting very tempted to make a flypaper run to the feedstore.
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Fri 29 Aug, 2008 04:48 pm
@roger,
Ah, but I armed myself with deet the one time I went to a memorial service by lake pond orielle, however you spell that, in Idaho. It worked, but that was re mosquitos.

Flies, I dunno, so I'll listen to you.

I've been lucky in my life, re flies. (Don't start now, eh?)

0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Fri 29 Aug, 2008 04:51 pm
@roger,
As I may have tried to express, I hate horseflies. I could be well wrapped and they'd still get me..

love a duck.
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Fri 29 Aug, 2008 04:54 pm
@ossobuco,
Also, Walter, that was a good link..
0 Replies
 
cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Fri 29 Aug, 2008 06:08 pm
Fabric softener helps to keep flies away. Used it in Africa while on safari, and it really helped!

Then, there's this:

Fabric Softener As Bug Repellent?

POSTED: 5:54 pm EDT April 7, 2006
UPDATED: 6:19 pm EDT April 7, 2006
[NEWSVINE: Fabric Softener As Bug Repellent?] [DELICIOUS: Fabric Softener As Bug Repellent?] [DIGG: Fabric Softener As Bug Repellent?] [FACEBOOK: Fabric Softener As Bug Repellent?] [REDDIT: Fabric Softener As Bug Repellent?] [RSS] [PRINT: Fabric Softener As Bug Repellent?] [EMAIL: Fabric Softener As Bug Repellent?]
BOSTON -- Every now and then, consumers receive an e-mail with information that sounds helpful, but if taken too seriously, could actually be harmful.

NewsCenter 5's Susan Wornick reported Friday that, according to the makers of Bounce, the product will soften fabric, but it's what else it allegedly does that caught some people's attention.

An e-mail circulating the country claims Bounce is an effective bug and insect repellent. Supposedly, it will divert ants and mosquitoes and is effective against bees.

The e-mail said that it is so good that the U.S. Postal Service sent out a message to all mail carriers, telling them to put a sheet in their uniform pockets to keep yellow jackets away.

The urban myth-busting Web site Snopes.com put the claims to the test and determined that Bounce "totally did not work" in trying to eliminate ants. It "failed" as a mosquito repellent.

As for bees, NewsCenter 5 called the Postal Service, and representatives said that there's been no such advisory to letter carriers.
0 Replies
 
margo
 
  2  
Reply Fri 29 Aug, 2008 11:35 pm
@hamburger,
Quote:
do you miss the flies or the kids - MORE GRINS .
i'm sure your kids will be happy that you miss 'em and so will the flies - LOL !


Hamburger - you took the words right out of my mouth - or cyber-equivalent!
hamburger
 
  1  
Reply Sat 30 Aug, 2008 03:04 pm
@margo,
margo :
what's this called "message through the spheres" or did insects flutter their wings - GRIN ?
hbg
0 Replies
 
 

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