Table of Contents
- 1 How to Get Rid of Flies
- 2 What Type of Fly Do I Have?
- 3 Why Do I Have Flies Inside All of the Sudden?
- 4 How Do I Get Rid of Flies Indoors?
- 5 Sources
- 6 Author Bio
How to Get Rid of Flies
Dealing with flies can seem like a never-ending headache if you don’t take the right steps to prevent and eliminate these pests. Common flies thrive indoors when conditions are ideal—especially in warmer months. If you’ve been wondering how to get rid of flies, the best course of action is to schedule regular pest control visits, which will also help with prevention.
What Type of Fly Do I Have?
The first step in addressing your fly problem is to verify the type of fly taking up residence in your home.
The common housefly (Musca domestica) is usually black or brownish in color and is 6-7 mm long (about the size of a thumbtack). These flies have stripes and hair on their bodies, brown translucent wings, and reddish eyes. These flies can survive for several weeks, and female houseflies lay about 120 eggs a week after mating.
If the flies you’re encountering are much smaller—say, the size of a grain of rice—you may be dealing with fruit flies. These pests are also very common indoors, and they can multiply very quickly. Fruit flies typically breed around ripe produce left out on countertops. Getting rid of fruit flies can be tricky, but making an at-home fruit fly trap can definitely help.
Blow Flies and Other Critters
There are several less common fly species that also might be in your home.
- Blow flies (or bottle flies) are usually more blue/green and metallic in appearance than the common fly, and tend to feed on rotting meat.
- Cluster flies are larger than the common housefly, have golden hairs on the body, and are usually slower than houseflies. They also feed on earthworms (unlike filth flies which reproduce and feed on garbage and excrement).
- Little houseflies are a smaller version of the common housefly and are commonly found around animal feces.
- Fungus gnats are very small—similar in size to fruit flies—and congregate around indoor house plants that have been overwatered.
Why Do I Have Flies Inside All of the Sudden?
Often, a housefly infestation seems to come out of nowhere. What attracts houseflies, and why are there so many of them in your house all of the sudden?
What Attracts Houseflies?
Houseflies will come inside to feast on improperly stored food and drinks, food waste left in uncovered garbage cans, and excrement (dirty toilets, used diapers, etc.).
Another major factor that contributes to a sudden uptick in houseflies is the weather. As soon as temperatures get warmer outside, houseflies are ready to breed and are more likely to come into your home.
What is the Life Cycle of a Housefly?
Houseflies can live up to two months inside your home if conditions are optimal. However, if their access to a food supply is cut off, they will usually die within a couple of days.
Female houseflies can lay about a hundred eggs at a time, and those eggs can hatch into larvae (maggots) within a day. It then takes those larvae a few days to become adult flies.
How Do I Get Rid of Flies Indoors?
The best way to get rid of indoor flies is to prevent them in the first place. By removing their food sources from every room of the house and sealing off entrances, you are much more likely to keep common flies away. Try these steps to avoid attracting flies:
1. Keep Your Home Clean
Food waste is the number one housefly attraction, which is why it’s so important to keep your home clean. Food sitting out from last night’s dinner, dirty dishes in the sink, or crumbs under a counter could all become a hot spot for flies. If you have small children around, you should also be on the lookout for spilled snacks, crumbs, and high-chair messes. Here are some other cleanliness tips to keep in mind:
Be sure to check bedrooms and bathrooms for food waste.
If you bring dishes into other rooms of the house, be sure to take them back to the kitchen after use to avoid attracting flies. It’s also a good idea to avoid throwing away food waste in these rooms, as garbage cans there may be changed less often.
Tidy up after making meals.
Sticky spills can attract flies, so take some time to scrub your counters after meal preparation and put away leftovers.
Stay on top of dishes.
Dishes that pile up in the sink are a major food source for houseflies. If you can’t get around to washing the dishes in your sink at the end of the day, at least rinse food debris away and run your garbage disposal.
Clean your toilets regularly.
Dirty toilets can also be a source of food and breeding for houseflies. Give your toilets a thorough scrubbing at least once every couple of weeks to avoid a buildup of bacteria.
Keep your garbage cans covered.
Use garbage cans with a lid and don’t let food waste sit in the trash for more than a day. Be sure trash cans are empty and clean before leaving on vacation so you don’t come home to an unwelcome infestation.
2. Place Herbs in the Kitchen
Some flies can be discouraged from staying indoors by the scent of natural herbs and oils. Basil, rosemary, and mint can be planted indoors in small pots, and diffused lavender oil may also help.
3. Keep Doors and Windows Closed
Make sure doors and windows are snugly shut, especially in the summer months. If you want to keep a window open for ventilation and fresh air, use a securely fitting screen without any tears or broken gaps.
Homes are for enjoying and relaxing, so if you’re facing bothersome pests, don’t hesitate to contact the experts at Joshua’s Pest Control for a free quote. Our highly trained field experts are ready to help you reclaim your home and peace of mind today.
Courtney Enzor has worked in the pest control industry for about a decade. From helping you build a fly trap to giving you the best tips for identifying various bugs, she loves answering all your pest-related questions and sharing her pest-related expertise through writing. At the end of the day, she hopes her content will help people avoid mishaps and keep families happy and healthy!