The Tsetse fly carries a disease known as Trypanosomes. When cattle is bitten the cow contracts a disease known as "wagana." In humans it causes "sleeping sickness". Every year this fly kills about three hundred thousand people and puts another fifty five million at risk. The people of Africa have about fifteen million to twenty five million roaming livestock. Every year from the nagana disease it kills an estimated one billion two hundred thousand dollars worth of cattle per year.
More than ten million square kilos of land across Africa lie in the middle of Tsetse fly territory. There are thirty-six countries in the Sub-Saharan that have a Tsetse fly presence. The Tsetse fly causes much pain to the livestock and crops in the Sub-Sahara.
Tsetse flies are unusual insects. Egg and larvae stages develop within the female. She gives birth every nine to ten days to full-grown larvae, which then borrows into the ground and forms a pupa.
Tsetse flies only mate once, but that mating provides enough sperm to fertilize the female throughout her ninety to one hundred day life span. The female produces about nine to ten larvae in her life span, and this makes them have very low reproductive rates.
They have tried to get rid of the Tsetse fly many times. One way was to pour insecticide on the cattle and let the cattle be the living target. This worked well in the upper parts of Africa but not so well in the dense forest where there are not a lot of roaming cattle. Another way was to catch the Tsetse fly with blue and white sticky traps that had insecticide impregnated on the screens. This method worked well and decreased the population substantially. Though this did take some time, they had to keep changing the colors until they found the right combination.
The Tsetse fly has killed people and cattle in Africa. The people of Africa have been trying to eradicate this fly for a very long time but they have been unsuccessful.