Keep Flies Away with Fashion


A report in the Journal of Experimental Biology is that a pattern of narrow stripes makes zebras “unattractive” to the flies.

Dr. Susan Akkeson of Lund University and her team placed a blackboard, a whiteboard, and several boards with stripes of varying widths into one of the fields of a horse farm in rural Hungary.

The striped board that was the closest match to the actual pattern of a zebra’s coat attracted by far the fewest flies, even less than the plain white boards that were reflecting unpolarised light,

Nature likely selected this pattern for more than comfort, as many African fly species are more than merely annoying;  they also carry blood borne disease.

Can people keep flies away by mimicking the zebra pattern? Researchers say, probably you can. So, if you have find yourself in jail, ask for the uniform. Or maybe wear black and white stripes to your next outdoor concert.