There are about 78,000 species of fly but the most significant in the home and food industry are the common housefly, blue and green bottles. Read on to know if you have a house fly infestation in your property:
House flies transfer bacteria and pathogens from their legs and body and leave traces of germs behind through constant defecating and regurgitating partly digested food onto the foods they are feeding off.
House flies breed quickly; especially in warm weather, where fly larvae can develop to the adult stage in less than two weeks.
The average female can lay up to 600 eggs in her lifetime, so it is important that an infestation is dealt with quickly and cleanly, otherwise, eggs and bodies can end up in food and contaminate where food is prepared of served leading to the spread of bacteria.
Flies can cost a lot more to a company than just the equipment it takes to remove and prevent them; it can cause problems with the health and safety issues of the business as well as its reputation.
With high levels of food safety regulations in place, it is important to tackle the issue of pest control before it can take place in food service and preparation areas.
There are many ways of combating the problem and preventing it from happening.
One of the simplest methods for preventing flies in specific areas is fly screens; these can come in a range of materials including PVC strips, Mesh, top hinge fly screens, and sliding doors and windows.
Through fitting and sustaining fly screens minimizes insect ingress and ensures that necessary actions have been taken to adhere to hygiene laws for the protection of food, food packaging, and food services.
Insecticide treatment is also an option for removing flies from food preparation areas; however, care must be taken in choosing the correct products for these sensitive spaces.
Common sprays and bait are loaded with harmful chemicals that can cause contamination to food and utensils; therefore it is important to ensure that insecticides are never applied while food is being prepared, served, eaten, or is otherwise open or exposed.
More advanced techniques for dealing with flying invaders is Electric Fly Killers (EFK’s) these machines are designed to offer the highest levels of insect control and can be used in a range of premises from food processing kitchens to fast food takeaways and shops.
A combination of UV technology and glue boards is used to capture and kill insects quickly and efficiently with no chemicals being used in the process.
This form of pest control is pro-active in the fight against flies in food preparation areas; preventing re-infestation in the future.
Once house flies are controlled it is important that they are held off effectively and that is where you need the leading flea control services.
But still, it is best to contact your locala pest control company to get only the best results. Following a strict procedure on getting rid of house flies can only be done by them accordingly and efficiently.
Gnats are relatives of flies and mosquitoes. In fact, they are tiny flies and sometimes called midges or blackflies. These insects thrive anywhere in the world and are mainly found near streams or rivers because they lay their eggs in wet places. Now, what do gnat bites look like?
They do not bite through clothes by they can crawl into your baby’s hair or under his clothes. A person who gets bitten by a gnat might not be aware of it at first.
But soon enough they will notice that the area around the bite will start to swell up. But a baby with sensitive skin may feel the bite at once and start to cry. A person who gets bitten by a gnat might also find a tiny amount of blood oozing from the bite.
The bite itself will be very itchy and, in a baby, may even be painful and very uncomfortable. If you were bitten by a gnat, what you should do is wash the bite with soap and water.
You should also consider applying a bit of antiseptic on the bite because gnats live in murky places and can land on dead animals and rotten food which are full of germs and bacteria.
After washing, you can apply an anti-itch cream to the bite or ask your doctor about an anti-itch medication that can be taken orally to help relieve the itching.
If the bite becomes very uncomfortable or painful, you can ask a doctor about pain medication that can be taken orally. You can also put an ice pack or a cold compress on the bite to help ease the pain.
When To Call Your Doctor
You should call your doctor if the area around the bite swells bigger than what is normal. Your doctor can recommend a prescription cream or oral medication. You should also call your doctor if your baby develops an infection.
The infection comes from scratching the bite. Your doctor could prescribe an antibiotic to clear up the infection. Very few people are allergic to a gnat bite, but if your baby has an allergic reaction to the bite, take your baby to your doctor right away.
Some of the most common symptoms of an allergic reaction include fever, difficulty breathing, getting the hives (characterized by red patches on the skin that are itchy and painful).
If you notice any of these symptoms in your child go to your doctor right away. They can administer medicines that could ease allergy symptoms and treat the allergic reactions.
How To Keep Your Baby From Getting Bitten
Make sure your baby wears protective clothing which includes long-sleeved tops and long pants. And, apply a baby-safe insect repellent so your baby’s skin every time you step out of the house, especially when visiting places near bodies of water.
A baby-safe repellent should not contain DEET, toxins, parabens, phthalates, and sulfates and should contain only natural ingredients.
Fruit flies come in varying yellow shades, brown-black or brown-yellow. As their name suggests fruit flies feed on fruits. They have red eyes dominating the head and a tan thorax. They are about a fifth of an inch to one tenth of an inch in length. Fruit flies are related to the house fly.
Fruit flies do not bite
The mouth structure of fruit flies does not aid biting so it cannot puncture or pierce anything. Fruit flies feed on liquids only. They will spit on solid food to soften and liquefy it before sucking it through their proboscis.
Fruit flies have a strong sense of smell. They are attracted to over ripe and fermenting fruit. The trash bin with the discarded salad remains of tomatoes, onions, avocado and other bits of fruits emit a scent that is irresistible to fruit flies. They fly towards the smell and right in to your trash can.
The life cycle of the fruit flies is about 50 days. The weather and temperatures greatly influence their development . During warm weather female fruit flies lay batches of eggs in garbage or rotten fruits which will act as food when they hatch into larvae. A female fruit fly can lay as many as 500 eggs in its lifetime increasing their population rapidly.
There are four clear phases in a fruit fly life cycle.
Egg phase: the female fruit fly lays about 20 eggs that hatch into larvae within 2 days. At this stage fruit fly eggs are so small you might fail to see them on your vegetables and fruits.
Larva phase: this stage lasts for about four days. The eggs change into maggots that eat night and day voraciously, readying for the next phase of transformation. They molt several times to accommodate their growing bodies.
Pupa phase: this is where the magic happens and the larva transforms into a fruit fly and emerges fully grown.
Adult fruit fly: this is a fully grown fruit fly and now the cycle can begin anew.
This whole process from egg to adult fruit fly metamorphosis takes less than two weeks.
During winter they enter a kind of sleep mode known as diapause during which their growth and appetite slows down until the weather warms up again.
How fruit flies get in your house
Fruit flies enter you home through open windows and doors. If these are closed they can pass through tiny gaps around the windows and cracks and crevices in the walls. You may import the fruit fly eggs laid in fruit and vegetables into your home when you buy them from the grocery store.
Fruit flies can be dangerous to your health because when they walk on garbage and rotting matter, bacteria laden debris sticks to their legs and when they alight on your fruit salad they leave some of these bacteria behind causing diarrhea and cholera.
To avoid attracting fruit flies in to your house make sure you keep vegetables and fruits in the fridge. Garbage bins should have tight fitting lids and frequently emptied and cleaned. Fruits that are about to rot should be discarded immediately.
The fruit fly is one of smallest and most ubiquitous flies found in our homes. It finds its way into our homes on fresh veggies and fruit brought from the grocery store. Finding plenty of food in the home it hangs around.
It has a yellowish – brown body with a tan underside and black rings across its abdomen. It has red eyes dominating the head. In length it’s 3 to 4mm.
Its scientific name is drosophila melanogasta though it is commonly known as fruit fly. It feeds on fermenting liquids such as beer, soft drinks, rotting vegetables, overripe fruit and foods in garbage. It can’t resist vinegar and pomace. Fruit flies are found in bakeries also because they are attracted to yeast.
A large amount of fruit is harvested at the tail end of summer and during fall attracting huge numbers of fruit flies.
The female fruit fly lays about 20 eggs in rotting fruit or in garbage that will be a food source for the larvae when they hatch. The eggs are very small and are easily overlooked. They will hatch after two days.
The second stage is the larvae. It lasts for about four days and within that period these worms eat night and day molting several times to accommodate the bigger body.
In the third phase the larvae seal themselves up in a cocoon and wait as the metamorphosis happens.
Fourth phase the fly emerges as fully formed fruit fly and the cycle begins again.
All these stages from egg to adult take just about two weeks.
Fruit flies can lay 500 eggs in their lifetime. They have a lifespan of 50 days.
The fruit fly doesn’t damage the home but it is a total nuisance.
Fruit fly control
The most effective way of controlling fruit flies is by identifying their source of food and their breeding habits
Refrigerate or throw away ripening fruits.
Before recycling beverage containers wash them out.
Make sure trash and garbage containers are clean.
Clean up any spilled soda, juices and beer.
Make simple effective homemade traps.
You will need :
Apple cider vinegar
Put a cup of the apple cider vinegar into a small bowl. Add a few drops of dish soap .
Place the bowl in where the fruit flies are let the trap work its magic.
This is effective because fruit flies can’t resist the smell of vinegar and they will try to land on top of it but will fall in and drown because the vinegar’s surface tension is broken by the dish soap.
This method is eco friendly cheap and has no harsh fumes.
Make another simple trap by putting a bit of overripe fruit in plastic bag that is open. Seal the bag carefully after the fruit flies have congregated on the fruit trapping them inside.
Prevent future infestations
Infestation happens when fruit that is infected is brought home from the grocery store. Don’t buy any produce that fruit flies are hovering around.
Make sure that fruits are eaten before they overripe.
Ensure your trash is taken out regularly and the bin scrubbed inside to get rid of bits and fluids that are left at the bottom.
If these measures don’t deal with the infestation call a professional pest exterminator to help you out.
Gnats are tiny flies including mosquitoes, midges, drain flies, black flies, fruit flies and sand flies. They buzz around your face and eyes so persistently even when you try to swat them away.
Gnats have head, thorax and abdomen. They have two pairs or a pair of wings and six legs which in most species are long compared to their body size. Their mouth parts are categorized as either lapping, piercing or sucking. Some gnats feed on blood. Others feed on plant material or other insects.
These insects are small and have a furry appearance. They have broad leaf shaped wings and a hairy body. They are found in drains, bathrooms, sinks and septic tanks. They are also found in sewage contaminated soil. Their eggs are laid inside the sink drains. The bacteria inside the drain acts as a food source for the larvae once the eggs hatch.
Sand flies are brown, gray, or golden. They are tiny flying insects. Despite their small size these insect has such a painful bite. You would think you have been stung. Their bite can result in inflammation and redness at the bite site. Females feed on mammals blood. The six species found in North America don’t carry any disease. The ones found in other regions of the world can transmit a virus called sandy fly fever which is not fatal.
These insects look very similar to mosquitoes. Midges however have a snout that’s much shorter. The females have feathered wings while the males have bushy ones. They will be found in swarms near lakes, slow moving streams and ponds . Lights attract them and they will be found flying around street and porch lights.
Fungus Gnats are small flies that look like tiny mosquitoes. Their heads are smaller than their segmented antennae. The have light light gray wings and narrow legs.
Fungus gnats lay their eggs in the soil of your potted plant and remain near the plant which has organic matter and fungus that act as their source of food. When the eggs hatch the larvae feed on the plant root hairs and the organic matter in the soil. At this stage they are not easily noticeable. They can damage your plant nutrition uptake causing stunted growth.
These insects are attracted by contaminated soil, rotting vegetable and fruits and accumulated garbage.
What attracts Gnats to your home?
Gnats love damp areas and places with organic matter. That’s why they are found in the bathroom.
They come to your home to seek out a place to breed and to find food.
Use fly paper. This method works every time. The paper has sticky surfaces that traps flying gnats. Just hung it up using a ribbon where there are lots of gnats.
Buy insecticide spray for these gnats and follow the instructions on the can on what to do.
Preventing gnat infestation
- Dry moist areas in your house.
- Repair any pipe leaks
- Throw out fruits that are overripe
- Don’t overwater potted plants.
Gnats are a nuisance. If their infestation overwhelms you, call a pest control professional to deal with effectively help you get rid of the problem.
HOW LONG DO HOUSE FLIES LIVE
With the exception of Antarctica, house flies are found everywhere humans are. House flies are one of the most annoying pests around. When spring comes around they rear their pesky heads again.
House flies have gray bodies. They have one pair of transparent wings. The head is dominated by their eyes which are made up of thousands of hexagonal lenses. This enables them to identify colors and gives them 360 degrees field of vision. They see four times faster than we do, so whatever you are doing is in slow motion to them. They are unable to see at night. They have three pairs of legs which are equipped with sticky pads and sharp claws at the tip. That is why house flies can climb and walk on all surfaces.
House flies don’t seem to do well in the wild. They live in close proximity to people feeding off their waste and foods. They transmit a lot of infections that are harmful to people
Two to three days after they are born house flies are ready to breed. They will lay a clutch of 100 to 150 eggs at a go in garbage, organic waste and spoiled food which will be food for the larvae when the eggs hatch. They are prolific breeders laying eggs 6 to 7 times in their lifespan. The eggs can’t be seen with the naked eye, they are very tiny. They hatch within a day and the larvae emerge. They are voracious eaters and in one week will increase in size by about 800 times. The larvae turns into pupa and in a week metamorphosizes emerging as an adult house fly. It takes 12 to 14 days to develop from egg to adult.
For the first 3 days the fly crawls while waiting for its wings to strengthen. At this stage it can procreate.
House fly lifespan
Do house flies live for 24 hours? That’s a myth. Typically the female house fly lives for around 25 days, males will live for around 15 days depending on the availability of food, the temperature and region among other variable factors. Generally in warmer temperatures house flies develop faster and in cooler temperatures will develop more slowly extending the life cycle a little.
Flies will eat just about any organic waste or food. They like sugary drinks and sweet liquid foods they can suck. To eat solid food they spit on it to liquefy it. Flies rub their legs to clean them of debris and then clean their eyes and wings.
House flies carry disease causing bacteria which they spread by crawling on food and depositing the bacteria that cause diseases like dysentery, cholera and anthrax.
Getting rid of house flies
There are plenty of ways to get rid of flies. There is always the simple and trusty fly swatter. This is very satisfying when the swatter comes into contact with the fly. But is rather messy and will take quite a while to hunt and kill them.
Adhesive tape emits a smell that attracts flies and they get stuck upon landing on it. It is very easy to use. Just unroll and hang it then go about your business let it catch the flies for you.
If the house flies overwhelm you reach out to a pest control professional to deal effectively with this problem.
Understanding what flies eat is one of the best ways to prevent their infestation. Generally, organic decaying matter attracts flies. Homes and business owners have issues with flies such as fruit flies, house flies and blow/bottle flies.
To know what flies eat is important since it helps remove conditions which are conducive to their infestations. Proper storage and disposal of food, cleaning surfaces where the food is prepared can greatly reduce their populations in your premises. Hygiene is the simple key that will make all the difference
The feeding habits
The adult flies feed and harvest for their larvae on organic decaying matter such as meat, vegetables, animal, human feces and plant secretions. The both sexes of flies also suck nectar from flowers.
Larvae are most likely to hatch during warm weather because that is when the flies are active. Flies are attracted to your home dues to heat and odors.
What do house flies feed on?
House flies can feed on any food and fecal matter from humans and plants. They can be considered to be general feeders. They have sponging mouth parts and therefore eat liquids. It is for this reason that they must liquefy food by regurgitation. The following are some of the substances they get attracted to:
- Animal feces
- Overripe vegetables and fruits
- Sugary substances
What do fruit flies feed on?
These are type of flies that get attracted to liquid sources and fermented food. This is why they are commonly found in food industry and homes. The types of foods they search for include:
- Fruits such as grapes, pineapples, bananas, onions, potatoes, peaches, mustard pickles, etc.
- Liquid like vinegar, wine, beer, and cider
- Sugary substances such as candy
What do blow/bottle flies feed on?
Blow/bottle flies are big flies with metallic green, blue black sheen. They are known to burrow themselves into food from where they develop. They are often the first to arrive immediately an animal dies. They prefer:
- Animal carcasses
- Decaying or fresh meat
What do cluster flies feed on?
They feed on flower nectar and other plant juices. When they are absent, they eat decomposing organic materials.
They lay eggs in moist soil cracks. In their larval stage and they tend to have a parasitic behavior. They are found on body cavities of earthworms which they have feed on.
What do horse flies feed on?
They are a rare type of fly that has mouth parts that can cut and tear. Their bite is very painful. Their jaws are scissor-like and can tear flesh.
The males eat honeydew, flower nectar and plant juices. The female horse flies feeds on blood meal to have enough protein to lay eggs. The females will bite on both humans and cattle to draw blood. Their larvae eat small insects found in the breeding area.
Flies can be annoying, dirty and others can bite. If you are experiencing an infestation in your home, practice high hygiene standard is key in reducing their population.
Flies grasp with their strong legs and claws and then diving their beaks firmly into the bodies of their victims, they suck the blood with great voracity. Next is the life cycle of a fly, the robber fly:
Robber flies belong to one of the largest families of the great order Diptera or two-winged flies. Many of them are of large size, the largest measuring nearly two inches in length.
They are usually hairy, and some of the species are quite robust, resembling the bumblebees in form and color; others are elongate with slender bodies.
The fertilized egg develops within the egg into a young insect, which escapes by bursting the shell or gnawing its way out.
Young insects go through shedding, or ecdysis, several times before they become adults and stop ecdysis permanently.
Most insects shed 4 to 8 times as they grow. The stages between the shedding are defined as instars.
Viewed from the front, the robber’s head is broad, the compound eyes are prominent, and the remainder of the face is hairy and bearded.
The proboscis or beak is stout and strong and is formed for piercing and sucking. Strong in flight, the two wings are long and narrow, while the legs, which are spiny and furnished with stout claws on their toes, are used in grasping their plunder as well as a support for their body when at rest.
These predatory insects rest on the ground, or upon the foliage of plants growing in open sunny spots. Here they lie in wait for their prey, and when a victim in the shape of some other insect appears, they take to the air with a loud, buzzing sound, catching it on the wing.
The unlucky insect, once seized in the powerful grasp of a robber fly, is powerless to escape.
They will attack almost any insect and are even bloodthirsty enough to catch and eat their own kind.
Often they have become a nuisance in making their lair in the vicinity of an apiary, where they kill the honeybees. One of the larger species was observed during the summer capturing a “locust” or cicada.
The robber-fly attacked the cicada on the wing about twenty feet from the ground, and the pair came whirling down. In this case, the booty was too bulky to carry off to some convenient roost, as is generally the case.
Fortunately, robber-flies never attack humans or animals, although if they are carelessly grasped they will sink their lancets into the flesh.
The larvae or “maggots” that hatch from the eggs laid by these flies are also carnivorous. Some of them live in the ground, where they hunt for food among the decaying vegetation; others make their home in rotting logs or beneath loose bark of dying trees, where they hunt and feed upon other soft-bodied insects.
If we follow the fortunes of one of these larvae or “maggots,” we will find that after consuming sufficient food and overwintering, it will go through the usual transformation, emerging finally from the pupal case a perfect robber-fly-and real robber.
If you are a hydroponics gardener you have to be careful about pests that can attack your plants. Pests like thrips, spider mites, and whiteflies can severely affect your plants’ growth. However the biggest worry for the hydroponics growers these days are an upstart pest called fungus gnats. What are these, and how do you get rid of gnats?
It’s those pesky little black insects that are about 1/8 inch in size and looks quite like mosquitoes. Fungus gnats or sciarid flies are often mistaken for fruit flies. They love humid environments and thrive in the damp soil of houseplants.
Gnats feed on plant roots. It affects the growth rate of plants. Plants mature slowly, the leaves start yellowing, curling and overall vigor is lost.
Fungus gnats lay eggs and the larvae feed on hydroponics plants’ root. The more they feed, the faster they grow into adults and lay more eggs.
This leads to the colonization of fungi on your roots. Gnat is fetal to a plant because it is a vector for the root zone diseases including the notorious Pythium root rot.
Not just in its living form, but as dead fungi too are harmful to your plants. It leaves behind carcasses that turn into sludge in the root area. This sludge encourages the growth of more fungi on it. Gnat is more of a threat in case of hydroponics since
So now the question is, how can you prevent the growth of fungus gnat on your plants’ root while practicing hydroponics? There are some easy ways to achieve the feat. First, take all precautionary measures.
Build a wall between the outside and the inside your garden. Also, sterilize all the tools and appliances in your garden. This will prevent the entry of vectors.
Try to keep pets out of your garden as they can be a source of infesting diseases. It is well-known that fungus loves the hydrophilic, moist atmosphere.
So, do not overwater your plants. You can also use sticky stripes to catch adult gnat fungi.
One more effective method is to add hydroponics enzymes to the root zone of your plants. This will destroys the organic matter. Since gnat fungi feed on organic matter, this will cut off their food supply and curb their growth.
Keep the surrounding of plants, the root zones clean. Keep drying the surroundings. Some suggest using hydroponics peroxide to get rid of a gnat. You can find it in any hydroponics store. But it may also kill useful microbes which are required for healthier growth of hydroponics plants.
Try to avoid using chemical fungicides to kill the gnat fungi as the chemical residues left on your plants are harmful to the plants as well as they may be contained in vegetables and fruits and cause health issues when consumed.
You can get organic pesticides in any hydroponics store.
Just a few precautionary measures will help you keep gnat fungus out of your garden and you can have flourishing, high growing hydroponics plants.
You will find those little bugs swirling over fruits, leftover beverages, sinks, and any place where they might find enough source of food to lay their eggs in. Now, how long do fruit flies live?
The fruit fly has a life-cycle of about 8-10 days, and a single female fly can lay about 500 eggs, which hatch within 30 hours of time. This is why you will see a swarm of them very very quickly, and it is exceptionally hard to get rid of them.
To eliminate them naturally is one of the best ways to get rid of them, because it will ensure a clean, beautiful, and sanitized home without any fruit flies roaming around without any control.
Now, how would you sanitize your home in order to avoid them?
The simplest approach is to keep everything clean, as much as it is possible. Make sure everything is clean and clear, wash the sink and clean the drain after you do the dishwashing, dispose of or clean your dishrags properly.
Also, make sure they are dried properly because fruit flies love those places to build their nest in. As you might already know, they breed only where they find sufficient food for the hatchlings.
Now you know their basic nature which might help you to get rid of those beasts. If you have a trash bin which is not the type that has a cover then it is recommended that you get one, also do not keep your trash in paper bags or any other bags just in the open.
It is essential that you dispose of your trash properly do not just get it out of sight, it will not solve your problem. Empty the bin every day or as soon as it is full, else it might attract even more of them.
They are also in “love” with fruits and vegetables, especially if those are overripe. If you have a bowl where you store your fruits in, make sure it is covered, or best is to keep it in the fridge.
These are some natural common tips to prevent and get rid of fruit flies, however, sometimes you will need other methods.
Make sure everything in your house is dry and clean because fruit flies will breed only in moist areas. This is why they love sinks actually because they will feed off the leftovers and it is extremely moist in a sink.
The most common breeding places for fruit flies are vegetables and fruits (hence the name fruit fly), wet and dirty dishrags, spills (which are usually hard to access for example behind a cupboard or under the bed where you wouldn’t expect it), and messes.
Make sure to get rid of all the things and seek the assistance of a pest control company in order to avoid a population of fruit flies.