Have you noticed small flies infesting your kitchen or work environment? These little pests are known as fruit flies, and they can be a nuisance year-round, especially during the summer months. Learn how to identify and remove these annoying insects.
What Do Fruit Flies Look Like?
Adult fruit flies are about 1/8 inch long and usually have red eyes with a tan upper half and a black lower half.
While this describes the most common fruit flies, there are actually more than 4,000 different species—the most common being:
- Drosophila melanogaster (the common fruit fly)
- Mexican fruit fly
- Mediterranean fruit fly
- Olive fruit fly
- Citrus fruit fly
What Attracts Fruit Flies?
Fruit flies are primarily attracted to ripened fruits and vegetables found in the kitchen or trash. However, they are also drawn to sweet liquids such as juice or alcohol and can breed in drains, garbage disposals, empty bottles, various trash containers, and even damp mops and cleaning rags—anything that may be a food source of organic material.
Are Fruit Flies Harmful?
While fruit flies are not dangerous and do not bite, they have the potential to contaminate food with bacteria and other disease-producing organisms, so it is important to get rid of these nuisance pests.
How to Prevent Fruit Flies
The best way to keep fruit flies away is to eliminate food sources.
- Consume, refrigerate, or discard ripened fruit and vegetables.
- Clean damaged fruits and vegetables that have cracks in them and discard the damaged portion in the event that eggs or larvae are present in the wounded area.
- Place vegetables, such as an onion or potato, that are often left forgotten at the back of a closet, in the refrigerator or in an easily visible area to ensure they get used.
- Carefully seal and regularly clean trash cans and recycling bins that contain organic matter.
- Ensure that windows and doors have tightly fitting screens.
What Smell Do Fruit Flies Hate?
Fruit flies dislike the smell of herbs, such as lavender, basil, mint, and rosemary. Hang or grind up these natural strong scents to help repel fruit flies and keep your kitchen smelling clean.
How To Get Rid Of Fruit Flies
There are several ways to eliminate fruit flies from your home.
Identify The Source Of The Infestation
Make DIY Fruit Fly Traps
Invest In A Carnivorous Plant
Call Professional Exterminators
FAQ About Fruit Flies
Below we provide answers to some commonly asked questions about fruit flies.