It happens every year: summer goes out and fruit flies come out in droves. While they are small, these little insects have the annoying habit of hovering around their products. In a short time, they are everywhere.
While it is likely that you have dealt with fruit flies at some level throughout your life, you probably do not know much about them, such as why a fruit fly becomes a dozen. Here, a small fruit fly 101 and how to get rid of them in your home forever.
Fruit flies vs. mosquitoes: what's the difference?
Fruit flies look like mosquitoes, but in reality they are different. "Mosquitoes are about half the size of fruit flies, often swarming and can bite," says Daniel Baldwin, director of technical services, training and regulators for Terminix. They are also usually found outside near compost piles or garden areas.
Fruit flies, on the other hand, do not swarm or bite and tend to hang around things that are fermenting, such as spoiled fruit.
"Fruit flies are often grouped into the category of & # 39; mosquitoes & # 39 ;, but they are not really mosquitoes, although fruit flies can share some behaviors," says Nancy Troyano, PhD, entomologist certified by Ehrlich Pest Control, how to invade very suddenly. But let's face it: both are a nuisance.
Why are there always so many fruit flies?
These small pests reproduce quickly, so you can notice one on a given day, and then many more not much later. Fruit flies can be a problem throughout the year, but they are more common at the end of the summer and during the fall, when fruits and vegetables are especially ripe or fermented, says Baldwin.
"When the fruits and vegetables we eat are ready to leave the vine or the tree, fruit flies abound in nature," says Trojan, adding that "they can easily enter your home from nearby areas. Inadvertently, too you can bring them home from the grocery store or the farmers market. ”
Fruit flies also tend to proliferate when you are not very careful with the deeper cleaning in your kitchen, for example, the garbage disposal and garbage areas, which creates more breeding and feeding sites for flies, says Baldwin.
How to get rid of fruit flies the right way
It may seem that they will never disappear if it is an infestation of fruit flies, but there are some things you can do to kill them and prevent them from taking over your home:
1. Cover your fruit (or wash it as soon as you bring it home).
Fruit flies need moisture (like decaying fruit) to feed and lay their eggs, says Baldwin. Therefore, store your fruit in bags or cover them with bowls instead of leaving them on your counter to keep fruit flies at bay. Washing and drying any fruit you leave out, such as bananas and apples, can also help eliminate any liquid or substance that attracts fruit flies.
2. Empty your trash regularly.
Trojan recommends doing it daily or every other day until you have control over the problem.
3. Use bags and garbage bags..
"The smallest piece of fruit or vegetables or a leaking container at the bottom of the trash can be a source of fruit flies," says Trojan. "This applies to both kitchen trash and bathroom dumps." Always use a lining or a bag so that everything is contained.
4. … and don't forget your recycle bin!
"This is a great hot spot where we often find a great source of fruit fly problems," says Trojan. Wear a liner here too, and be sure to clean it after emptying it too.
5. Make a fly trap of DIY fruit.
Like an everything, Finding and eliminating your food source and breeding area is "the most effective option" Baldwin says. But you can also try to make your own DIY fruit fly trap. While these tactics do not always solve the problem, it is worth trying to see if they help the problem. The following liquids can help attract, capture and kill adult fruit flies:
Apple cider vinegar
Old beer or wine
Pour some of your favorite substance into a glass and leave it uncovered. The flies will be attracted to the sweetness, eventually hit the liquid to feed and drown. In the case of using old wine or beer, simply leave the bottle outside; The narrow neck will help keep them trapped.
If you prefer to use a bowl, pour the liquid and cover it with a plastic wrap (securing it with an elastic band) with small perforated holes. This allows fruit flies to enter the trap, but makes it difficult for them to escape.
6. Clean your kitchen sink.
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Sometimes, a garbage disposal or drain can be the culprit of a fruit fly problem, so Trojan recommends using a garbage disposal cleaner or a safe drain cleaner to solve the problem.
7. Call an exterminator.
"As long as the right conditions are available, fruit fly problems will persist and often get worse," says Baldwin. "Females can lay hundreds of eggs, and a single piece of fruit can support the development of thousands of flies." When it seems that these are fruit flies that multiply at an "uncontrollable rate," it's time to call expert help, says Baldwin.
How to prevent fruit flies from reproducing
Once again, eliminating breeding sites is the best way to get rid of fruit flies, says Baldwin. This probably means fruit and other products you have lying on, or it could be your trash can. That's why Baldwin recommends removing wet things from your kitchen, keeping them clean and storing your products in sealed containers. In general, you simply want to find fruit flies where They are playing and knock out the source.
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Korin Miller Korin Miller is a freelance writer who specializes in general wellness, sexual health and relationships, and lifestyle trends, with jobs that appear in men's health, women's health, self, glamor and more.