A PLAGUE of greenfly likened to something from an Alfred Hitchcock film descended on parts of Teesdale.

The air was turned green on Tuesday as swarms of the insect forced residents to take cover indoors when they hit at about 2.30pm.

The 'invasion' lasted for more than two hours with hot spots in places such as Eggleston, Kinninvie and Ovington.

Those brave enough to encounter the troublesome bugs captured the swarms on video.

Eggleston farmer, Marcus Bainbridge, said the "everything was just a blurred green colour" and his livestock were still shaking the insects off for hours after they dissipated.

He said: "The best word to describe it is it was a plague - I have never seen anything like it in 20 years living here or 50 years in Eggleston."

He added: "They weren't painful just very unpleasant with they getting in your mouth and nose and crawling all over you.

"The horses outside were running around trying to shake them off and the sheep were shaking themselves to try and get them off their heads and out of their fleeces for hours afterwards.

£It was instantaneous like someone had just turned the tap on and there they were."

Teenager and amateur photographer and filmmaker, Cameron Sharp, was walking near Kinninvie when he encountered the swarms at about 3pm.

The 19-year-old, of the Barnard Castle area, said: "It was like a cloud or haze and the noise of the tiny wings was incredible. Whilst I was recording the video, they would land all over my cardigan and camera.

"Apparently there has been different swarms all over Teesdale and parts of Bishop Auckland. I'm going to study zoology at university in September so whilst everyone else was freaking out - I was fascinated.

"I've seen mini swarms of Mayfly along the river Tees but I've never seen so many insects in a group together.

"I'm also hoping to enter a career in wildlife photography/filmaking so it was brilliant to be able to capture this unique event."

He added: "I think it may have given Alfred Hitchcock ideas back in the day."