- Pleasant non-chemical smell
- Non-irritating for both humans and horses
- Long lasting
- Deterred insects and flies in spring
- Option to buy a bundle deal to save money
- Spray top was not effective
Price as reviewed:
£19.99 for 500ml
Biteback Superfly spray and gel
While fly season in Cumbria has begun slightly later this year, it’s always beneficial to arm your horse with an appropriate defence in the form of a fly spray as soon as the spring weather hits and the temperature starts to rise.
I used the Superfly Ultimate Insect Repellent Gel and Ultimate Insect Repellent Spray from Biteback Products for a three week period on my Connemara pony, Yogi, when he was turned out in the field and while he was ridden and hacked on warmer days.
According to Biteback, SuperFly, which is also available in a more sensitive form for horses who need a more gentle solution, represents a “new generation of repellents”. The description that it creates a barrier for biting bugs and cares for the skin was enticing, as Yogi does have quite a fine coat and is sometimes prone to rubbing his face on his stable in the hot weather.
The main ingredient was the Icaridin, a human-grade repellent that repels most insects, including horse flies and midges, which are most commonly found in Cumbria, but it also deters ticks, mites and mosquitoes. The concentration level in SuperFly is 20% and it should provide 8+ hours protection from midges, 12+ hours from mosquitoes, 9+ hours from black flies, and a minimum of 5 hours from stable flies and horse flies. SuperFly also contains the essential oil Lavandin, which claims to calm the skin and support the skin’s healing process through its naturally antiseptic properties.
The first thing I noticed about SuperFly was the pleasant, slightly floral smell. It was strong, but wasn’t overpowering and did not smell overly chemical like many other fly repellents. Also, I did get some of the spray in my eye at some point and it did not hurt in the slightest, which was another testament to the lack of harmful chemicals used to make the solution.
I was provided with a separate spray top to connect to the larger bottle. I used the fly spray on the body and the gel on small rubs/marks which may be more susceptible to flies and midges.
When I returned Yogi from the field he didn’t have a single fly on him, and his marks had also been untouched by insects. Similarly, while out hacking the spray worked as a strong defence against insects and flies, which are commonplace when hacking out near densely vegetated areas. Fly season is not yet in full swing, but I would have faith that this product would work in warmer conditions when the flies start to come out even more.
The gel did exactly what it said on the tin; it soothed the skins while protecting the problem areas susceptible to bites. The manufacturer suggested putting the gel on a cloth but the solution felt safe enough to apply directly from my hand onto the animal.
The only gripe I had with the product was that the spray top wasn’t very effective and I struggled to make the liquid come out of the hole in a wide spray motion; it would shoot out in a harsh, single shot which Yogi did not appreciate and would make the product hard to get onto all the areas of his body. I therefore opted to spray the solution onto my hand and wipe it on his body. This still offered good coverage and results but it would have been preferable to have a fine spray effect for ease of use.
The cost of a 500ml bottle of spray was £19.99, and the cost of the gel was also £19.99. Biteback do offer bundles at times, which would be a cost effective way of sourcing both products. I thought this was a well-priced product as it does seem like it will last a considerable amount of time.
A high quality, affordable fly spray which is an ideal product if you are looking for a natural solution without harsh chemicals. The spray top was not very efficient so this could be something for the manufactures to look at.
View now at amazon.co.uk
Who tested this flyspray?
Alex Robinson joined H&H in January 2018 as showing editor and features assistant. She graduated from University of Leeds in 2016 and has freelanced for specialist equestrian magazines, including The Native Pony Magazine and has contributed to the National Pony Society annual journal for the past few years.
Born and raised in the Lake District, Alex has grown up on the show scene. She has qualified and competed ponies at the Royal International, Horse of the Year Show (HOYS) and Olympia and has extensive knowledge of current issues in the showing world and the horses, ponies and riders who compete. She has a rare insight into the sector that comes with riding amongst the best at top level. She has produced a variety of rides to the highest level and has a passion for bringing on youngsters through the ranks. She has several ponies, mainly natives of all types, on the yard and rides most days each week before work.
At H&H Alex is responsible for the all aspects of showing coverage and is continuing to cement its place as the leading publication for both reports and current showing news. When not writing, she will be found competing her own ponies on the county show circuit.
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