Fruit Flies Everywhere!

Fruit fly on an orange.

Flies are not an uncommon commodity in Hartford or any other corner of the world. There are many species of flies—houseflies, fruit flies, drain flies, cluster flies, and even the small fungal flies—none of which are welcome guests.

The life cycle of the fly is similar to most other pests, beginning with an egg. The egg hatches into a larva, then transforms into a pupa, and quickly emerges as an adult fly.

Eggs are usually always deposited in a location that will provide ample food for the immature larva; a pale-colored, legless maggot. The cycle from the deposited egg to the emergence of an adult fly is an amazingly short period ranging from 7 to 14 days. This obviously allows multiple generations during one typical breeding season.

While flies are not noted for biting and stinging like a mosquito or a wasp would, they pose serious potential health threats. Houseflies, for example, can be found in garbage, animal feces, floor drains, overripe fruits, and other sugar-laden items. During their feeding frenzy, flies will defecate on the food, transmitting diseased organisms.

Fruit flies also pose a similar health threat. Even though fruit flies are attracted to your ripened fruits and vegetables on your kitchen counter, they also will be found in drains, trash containers, garbage disposals, and even dirty mops. Fruit flies, for the most part, are not only a nuisance but also have the potential to spread bacteria and contaminate food. The fruit fly can lay as many as 500 eggs and will only take about 8 days to complete the life cycle from egg to adult.

Fruit flies in Hartford are a problem year round, but they are especially problematic in the late summer and early fall with the abundance of ripened or fermenting fruits and vegetables. The eggs are often carried into the house on fruit and vegetables from the garden or grocery store and quickly emerge into an adult fruit fly.

As with all pests, the best defense against infestation is twofold—eliminate all opportunities of entry and remove sources of food. While this may not take care of your fly invasion entirely, it will greatly reduce your fly population. To decrease or eliminate the population of house flies, make sure doors stay closed and all screens are free of rips and holes. Check for any other points of entry in which flies can come in and repair accordingly. It is also a good idea to inspect outside the home for anything that may be an attractive breeding site for flies such as compost piles and garbage.

Thoroughly wash all fruit and vegetables as soon as you bring them into the house to eliminate any eggs that may have been deposited. Keep fruit covered as much as possible. Remember that overripe fruit is a great attractant to fruit flies. This is the time of year when the Hartford region enjoys the harvest of apples and other fruit. If you are blessed with fruit trees, be sure to keep the ground free of fallen fruit. The fruit on the ground is usually overripe and bruised and will be a great attraction to flies. The residents of Hartford are always encouraged to call American Pest Solutions for assistance in the management of flies and other house pests.