Fruit flies are small, but mighty! Under the right conditions, these teeny tiny critters can quickly get out of hand inside your home. Contrary to popular belief, fruit flies don’t spontaneously grow out of rotting materials. They find their way inside by following the odours of fermentation and alcoholic beverages, overripe fruit, or hitching a ride on purchased produce. Here’s what you need to know about dealing with an infestation.
What are fruit flies?
Adult fruit flies are about two to four millimetres long. They typically have dull-yellow with brown markings to dark brown bodies, and distinctive bright red eyes. Fruit flies also have clear, membranous wings and small, bristly hairs on their bodies and legs, giving them a fuzzy appearance.
Fruit fly life cycle
The fruit fly life cycle is made up of four stages: Egg, larva, pupa, and adult. First, female fruit flies lay eggs on fermenting, overripe, or decaying organic matter. Fruit fly development time is affected by temperature and in warm temperatures can finish in as little as eight to ten days. The eggs only take about a day to hatch. The newly hatched larvae then develop for four days before pupating. After pupating for four to five days, they emerge as adult fruit flies. The average lifespan of an adult fruit fly is about two months.
How to get rid of fruit flies
Fruit flies can be a problem year-round, but are especially common during late summer and fall because they’re attracted to and breed on ripened and fermenting fruits and vegetables. If you’re dealing with an infestation, take the following steps to eradicate it:
- Find and eliminate all food and breeding sources
Fruit flies lay their eggs directly on rotting, overripe, and unrefrigerated produce. They also breed in areas that remain consistently wet or damp, such as inside rarely used pipes and drains. To get rid of an infestation, you must locate and eliminate all food sources and breeding grounds. For example, wipe up any sticky spills in your kitchen, clean, empty and tightly seal garbage cans, recycling bins and compost bins, refrigerate produce, and fix any leaky drains or faucets.
- Control the adults
Once you’ve eliminated fruit fly food and breeding sources, you can use a pyrethrum-based aerosol insecticide to kill any remaining adult flies in the area. Glue traps, light traps, and baited jar traps fitted with tops that prevent escape can also be effective in reducing adult populations.
Poulin’s Pest Control carries various fruit fly treatments and control products to effectively rid your home of these pesky insects.
Fruit fly control in Alberta, Manitoba, and Saskatchewan
Don’t let fruit flies ruin your summer! Let Poulin’s Pest Control help you to control the flies. We carry various treatment and control products to help you eliminate a pesky infestation from your home or business. Contact us today to speak with one of our pest control professionals for expert advice.