How do I get rid of fruit flies?
Everyone’s home has flies in it occasionally, and we all can use a few tips on fly control at some point. In this case, how do you deal with an infestation of fruit flies?
Identifying Fruit Flies
First of all, you need to know if you actually have fruit flies or some other kind of winged pest. Fruit flies are definitely not the same as house flies. They are very small, with fine bodies but somewhat large eyes. Once you know what they are, they’re easy to recognize. When they are a problem in your home, you’ll see them mostly in the kitchen, probably around your garbage or sink.
They don’t bite, so in some ways they are harmless. But they do reproduce very quickly and you’ll have swarms of annoying flies in your house in no time at all.
Get Rid of Them
The first step is that you should try to swat or otherwise kill them as soon as you see them. They aren’t as quick as house flies, and you can make a dent in their population with just a fly swatter.
For something less hands-on, you can put together a fruit fly trap. There are a few different ways of approaching this, and you may have to experiment a bit to see which design works best for you.
The typical fruit fly trap consists of a shallow dish with a mixture of 50/50 apple cider vinegar and water. Add a couple drops of dishwashing liquid soap (to break the surface tension on the water), and just leave the dish out where the flies are congregating. They are attracted to the vinegar, as it smells like the spoiling fruit they love, and get caught up in the liquid to drown. When you start accumulating bugs, you just empty out the dish and make up a new batch of bait solution.
Another type of trap can be made with a long, flat container with a removable lid, and a bit of soft fruit inside as bait. Set the fruit inside at one end, and loosely place the lid on top, leaving a half inch crack at the other end of the container. Leave it for a while (overnight is good), and when you see flies inside around the bait, quickly shift the lid closed before they can fly out. Open it up again outside and set it back up again.
When you have a more serious outbreak, you can also invest in an electric pest control device that targets fruit flies.
Whatever approach you decide to take, it’s best to start as soon as you see the first few flies. As we’ve said, they reproduce quickly and a couple of flies will soon be a cloud of them.
And don’t forget a good dose of prevention can help keep your fly problem to a minimum to begin with. Keep your kitchen garbage tightly covered, or at least empty the bag or bin daily. Don’t leave fruit sitting out on the counter once it starts to get even slightly soft, and clean any food waste out of your sink drain. These are the places where fruit flies tend to accumulate and will lay their eggs, leading to more pests.