Black flies in Spain Costa Blanca

A fly known as the ‘mosca negra’ (black fly) whose bite causes a severe stinging sensation has been detected in the Marina Alta area in the Costa Blanca.
It was first seen in the Valencian region in 1995. Apparently the numbers of this type of fly measuring just 2 to 3 millimetres have proliferated over recent years to plague levels especially in river and coastal areas along the Costa Blanca. Furthermore the first cases where people have been bitten by the black fly have been recorded along the Alberca and Girona rivers in the area of the Marina Alta.
Last weekend three children who were playing on a beach in Denia (playa de les Marines) where the river Alberca meets the sea suffered various insect bites on their legs, feet and stomach. Experts believe that the so called ‘mosca negra’ was responsible for the bits due to their severity.
In addition a few isolated cases of insect bites believed to be made by the black fly have been detected along the river Girona which goes through Beniarbeig, El Verger and Els Poblets.

A jogger who was running along the riverbank noticed a stinging sensation in one leg and shortly afterwards suffered severe swelling in the affected leg. It is also probable that some agricultural workers in areas close to the rivers Alberca and Girona have also suffered insect bites from the ‘mosca negra’.
Yesterday a spokesperson for the Dénia hospital said that so far they hadn’t treated more insect bites than usual for this time of year. Therefore so far the authorities have not categorised the invasion of this insect in areas of the Costa Blanca as a plague. However, it is thought that the high temperatures over the last few days have helped the numbers of this insect to increase. Moreover victims of insect bites are more likely to go to a chemist to seek treatment rather than their local accident and emergency department which may be one reason why hospitals have not noticed unusually high number of people requiring treatment for insect bites.