Gangtok: According to official reports, On Tuesday around 100 students of an engineering college in East Sikkim suffered severe skin infections after coming in contact with Nairobi flies. A student who was recently infected by the flies had to undergo surgery on his hand.
What is Nairobi Fly: Nairobi Fly is the common name for two species of rove beetle and genus Paedrous, native to East Africa. The beetles contain a corrosive substance known as pederin, which can cause chemical burns if it comes into contact with the skin. Because of these burns, the Nairobi fly is sometimes referred to as a "dragon bug."
According to the officials, These flies usually destroy crops and eat pests. These flies do not bite, but if disturbed while sitting on anyone's skin, they release a potent acidic substance that causes burns. The flies should be gently blown off and not disturbed or touched. The area where these flies sit should be washed with soap and water to prevent infection from spreading.
The major feature of ‘Nairobi Fly’ is their red and black colour. Mild cases of this infection result in slight redness in the skin. In Moderate cases, itching will start after 24 hours. More severe cases causes fever, nerve pains, joint pains or vomiting.
As of now, The college administration said that the infected students are undergoing medication and recovering and the administration is looking into the matter. The administration is taking further safety measures and is spraying pesticides to stop further infection.