Nose bots are caused by the larvae of the bot fly.
The adult female bot fly leaves larvae in the nostrils of caribou. Nose bot larvae attach and grow in a cluster in the caribou’s throat near the base of the tongue. The larvae are sneezed out in the spring. Nose bots are commonly found in barren-ground caribou in the NWT.
Nose bot larvae in nasal cavity of a caribou.
What are the signs of nose bots?
Caribou usually appear healthy.
When laying their eggs, bot flies can harass caribou and interfere with feeding.
Nose bot larvae are found in the sinuses and airways at the back of the throat.
The worm-like larvae are white when they begin to develop but grow to 2 - 4 cm in length over the winter and become yellowish-brown.
How can I protect myself?
You cannot be infected by nose bot flies or their larvae.
Can I eat the meat?
Meat from affected animals is suitable for human consumption.
Samples to collect
Larvae of the bot fly.
Updated: November 20, 2012