Our friends at Absorbine® explain the different types of UltraShield® fly spray and how each works best.Spring and summer offer the perfect breeding grounds for all those pesky flies, gnats, mosquitoes and ticks, and their many species that pose a threat to the comfort and well-being of our horses. With a plethora of different products to pick from, choosing how to combat these insects can prove to be a tough decision. Understanding these options the best you can is a good start to knowing the right protection for your horse.
Fly sprays are used to help control insects that spread diseases such as West Nile virus and Lyme disease. It comes down to the “active ingredients” when deciding the right direction for your horse’s proper fly protection. Some fly spray basics that are helpful to understand are:
- Insecticides kill insects through direct contact.
- Pyrethrins are commonly used insecticides that kill insects quickly by attacking the central nervous system, but are broken down rapidly by sunlight. A synergist can be added to increase the longevity of its effectiveness.
- Repellents only repel insects, they do not kill them; they work by evaporating to create a shield above the animal.
- Permethrin is a synthetic version of pyrethrin that works by attacking the fly’s central nervous system, and also acting as a repellent, with residual properties.
- Synergists are additives that enhance the effectiveness of the insecticide.
To help ease the confusion, Absorbine® offers four distinct fly control options with the line of UltraShield® products, giving you the ability to rotate fly sprays depending on the weather, insect intensity and the horse’s activity level.
UltraShield® EX’s water-based formula is Absorbine’s most advanced formula known to kill and repel more than 70 species, including biting and nuisance flies, gnats, ticks that may carry Lyme disease and mosquitoes which have been known to transmit West Nile virus. Pyrethrin, Permethrin and the synergist Piperonyl Butoxide are the active ingredients in UltraShield® EX that create a combination that kills on contact and provides lasting protection for up to 17 days. It also contains multiple sunscreens and coat conditioners, including aloe and lanolin. The weatherproof, sweat-resistant formula is great during heavy fly activity for competitions, trail riding, schooling, turn-out, around the farm as a premise spray or even on the family dog!
UltraShield® Red’s water-based formula is known for its 24/7 pest protection and broad spectrum control against biting and nuisance flies and mosquitoes, with repellency that stays active for up to seven days. UltraShield® Red contains a combination of five active ingredients, four pyrethroids and the synergist Piperonyl Butoxide to kill on contact. It has the ability to withstand extended exposure to intense sunlight, which makes Red a great choice for hot, dry conditions. These conditions often lead to heavy fly activity, where Red can protect your horse from several species of ticks including deer ticks that may carry Lyme disease.
UltraShield® Sport’s water-based formula is Absorbine’s sweat- and weather-resistant formula that stays active and keeps working through the hottest, most humid weather. Sport provides repellency and long-lasting protection from horseflies, houseflies, stableflies, faceflies, hornflies, deerflies, gnats and mosquitoes that may transmit West Nile Virus. UltraShield® Sport contains cypermethrin which is known for its resistance to sunlight and water. This makes it perfect for hot, humid conditions, continuing to work through rain and sweat, and staying active for up to 14 days.
UltraShield® Green’s water-based formula is an eco-safe formula for the entire family and environment. UltraShield® Green’s formula is a combination of seven natural oils that work to repel and control biting flies, mosquitoes and gnats for up to eight hours protection. It is great for use during the cooler months of early spring and late fall when the fly activity is light. Green is also effective against ticks, which are more active during these times. Leaving a pleasant scent, and soft and shiny coat, UltraShield® Green is a great choice for anyone looking for a natural and safe formula.
To obtain the maximum protection and strength from any of the UltraShield® formulas, be sure to follow the instructions on the labels. Just like people, horses have different levels of tolerance for pesky pests, ranging from quiet tail swishing, to frustrated hoof stomping, to all-out running, rearing and bucking. Finding the correct formula that keeps your horse happy is what every horse owner wants, that’s why Absorbine® covers all ends of the spectrum to keep your horse protected.