Nasal Bots (Parasites)


Commonly Infected Wildlife

In Missouri, deer and elk may be infected.

Is This Animal Infected?

Many animals show no external sign of infection, although minor nasal discharge may be present.

Hunters frequently find the larvae in the head or body cavity while processing their deer.

The larvae range from white to yellowish brown and may average 1 to 13⁄8 inches in length.

Can I Get It?

No. People cannot be infected by nose botflies or their larvae.

How bad can it get?

There is no known risk to humans.

Symptoms in humans

None. People are not at risk.

Deer jaws split to reveal nasal bots
Southeastern Cooperative Wildlife Disease Study

Protect Myself and Others

Meat from affected animals is safe for human consumption.

Safe for Pets?

Yes. The meat is safe for animal consumption when it is cooked properly. Nasal botflies, however, can directly infect some livestock such as sheep and goats.

What Causes It?

Developing larvae of botflies in the genus Cephenemyia. Adult female flies eject developing larvae into the nostrils of deer.