Could fruit flies have disturbed you in your place? Do you wonder where they may have come from or how long they live? In this article, I will be answering this question in depth.
Summary: Fruit fries come from bush hideouts through the windows, doors and even ventilation; fruit trees and flower in the compound or neighborhood; they can come as a result of weather changes in the area; they could have been on your food when you were bringing it home or it could even be possible that some of your food you bought had fruit flies eggs inside it without notice.
However, it is important to note that these fruit flies may come because something has attracted them into the vicinity. Their movement is mainly triggered by specific attractants – though there could be other means as highlighted above that may have resulted them to being in your household.
What attracts fruit flies?
Fruit fries are very small insects commonly found in tropical areas with humid climatic condition. Mostly, fruit fries are attracted into your house by ripen fruits or vegetables.
Fruits like tomatoes, melons, grapes or other perishables in the farm attracts these flies. Rotting potatoes, bananas, onions, cabbages and other unrefrigerated products bought from groceries in your house attracts many of these fruit flies.
They can also be attracted to decomposing waste, empty bottles, cleaning rags or mops that are within the compound or farm. The key thing here is the fermenting smell. These flies have very high sense of smell thus; they can detect these scents when they are kilometers away.
Yeast leads to fermentation process and helps a lot in making these fruit flies get attracted to foodstuff. Alcoholic drinks tend to attract the fruit flies due to the fermentation scent in them especially the locally made brews. It is therefore important for you keep note of proper storage of these fruit flies attracting products so as to minimize the effects associated with them.
Related: Do ants Eat Bed Bugs.
How do fruit flies enter your house from outside/hideouts?
You may wonder to find that even after closing all your doors, windows and keeping everything spotless clean, you still find fruit flies in your house. This is not magic! Fruit flies are very small. They can penetrate through the tinniest space left at the door or window from outside and find its way to the rotting/fermenting items in the house.
This is a major blow to individuals as it’s almost impossible to seal completely your house so as to prevent their entrance. In fact, you need ventilation for aeration in the house, which offers them a quick route into the kitchen, bathroom or toilet.
How do fruit flies come from fruit trees and flowers?
We now know very well that fruit flies are highly attracted by fermenting substances and through use of sense of smell, they can locate the rotting foodstuff. Fruits like grapes, mangoes or oranges highly produce these scents when they are ripening. You will find that more of these flies brood in these environments.
The flowers from various plants also hold breeding grounds for these fruit flies. This is attributed by nectar produced by these particular flowers. In case your compound or yard has these flowers, expect some fruit flies within.
Once the attractants are depleted from the vicinity, these fruit flies looks for any available option around which could be: in your house, nearby hotel or even damping site- just by use of smell.
How does weather change favors existence of fruit flies?
Fruit flies tend to thrive very well during summer than in winter. This is attributed by the fact that temperature accelerate rotting/fermentation activity, which in turn releases a scent that attracts the fruit flies. Moreover, warm temperature favors breeding of these fruit flies in a given environment.
Fruit flies also work best during dusk or dawn. They like dim light environment more as compared to the bright light areas. This does not mean that you won’t find them in bright-lit regions. No! Only that dim light is more favorable for Fruit flies.
During winter. You may experience less fruit flies as compared to summer. This won’t overlook the fact that you will see some of them in your household! However, the number will drastically fall. This tells you why some people rarely experience fruit flies problems in their locality.
In which way do fruit flies get into the food that is brought home?
Often, you find yourself doing shopping of various fruits and vegetables. In case you buy them in a grocery where there were fruit flies invasion, chances are that your items will have some of these flies. You may ask how?
These fruit flies are very small. They may have laid eggs beneath the fruits or other vegetables and you may end up transporting them home where they hatch into fruit flies.
On the other hand, some of them may hide inside some vegetables like cabbages or kales only to go hatch and multiply in your house. It is very important for you to keep note of health matter of groceries that you frequently buy your fruits and vegetables.
At times, you may even have bought flowers or drinks like wine that attracts these fruit fries. This may attract some of fruit flies to these items without your notice and they end up into your homestead where the further bred.
Where do fruit flies breed/reproduce?
Now that we know fruit flies are mainly found in hotels, homes or supermarkets where foodstuff are allowed to ferment or rot, let’s elaborate their breeding process. Fruit flies lay eggs near the surface of the rotting/fermenting food, organic material or beneath the fruit skin.
Each fruit fly lay about 500 eggs, which takes 24-48 hours to hatch. This should tell you that within a week, you would expect thousands of these flies in the house if not taken care of.
These flies can also breed in any moist place. It could be drain, garbage disposal, wet rag or mop. The larvae is able to feed on the surface or fermenting/rooting product (fruit/vegetables) thus accelerating the process further.
These flies end up destroying the whole fruit or vegetable making them unsafe for human consumption. This may really be pathetic. Therefore, you will need to take care of them before they get more nuisance.
Do fruit flies cause any problems/harmful?
You will agree with me that there is nothing as much irritating as swam of fruit flies in your kitchen, living room or compound. It becomes even more disgusting to walk into a supermarket or restaurant and a swam of them flew over foodstuff. This will not auger well.
These flies causes discomfort to human where they even engulf a person when you try to chase them away. Worse of it all is that the more you chase them, the more they keep coming back. It is such a tedious work that many find themselves giving up on them or disposing the whole food items. They actually cause waste of food material.
Fruit flies accelerate the rotting of the food substances. Fruits like ripe bananas rots faster in their presence since the larvae feeds on the surface exposing the inner part, which is most nutritious for human consumption.
Contamination caused on food by fruit flies lead to food poisoning. In addition, they introduce bacteria and other disease causing organisms that may be harmful to human beings.
Importantly, you do not need to dispose you fruits or other vegetables just because they have been attached by fruit flies- just cut off the affected part since these flies do not dig deep while feeding.
How do you get rid of fruit flies?
There various ways/methods of getting rid of fruit flies you can use in case they are giving you real problem. I have discussed each of them below.
Method 1: Attracting them using rotten fruit.
Since fruit flies like rotten fruits due to fermentation smell, which attracts them. You can place several of them in a proper place inside a container where the flies can easily smell. Then cover with a polythene paper or plastic casing with few holes. These flies will fly in and are trapped inside.
Method 2: Using a flytrap that stick.
You can buy a flytrap that stick from the market. This fly traps are smeared with sticky substances which when fruit fly touch it, it cannot escape. You will need to place several of these traps in various places like toilet, bathroom or kitchen where these fruit flies can get trapped.
A good example of this trap is yellow flytrap. These traps will not only trap fruit flies but also get lead of moths and even houseflies.
Method 3: Using a candle trap.
In this method, you will require a candle and a tray of water. Place the candle inside the tray with water. Take the tray where there is fruit flies. Switch off lights in the room or compound so that the candle remain as the only source of light.
This trap focuses on two destructive ways. One, once the flies get close to the candle, they are burnt to death by the flame. The second one is where fruit flies try to avoid the candle and get lured by water reflection. Once they get in, they cannot get out.
Method 4: Using a vinegar or wine trap.
This type of trap is for those fruit flies that are highly attracted by vinegar or wine. Mix a little of vinegar or wine with dish soap. Pour the mixture into a tall container. Select a better position with more fruit flies and place your container.
The scent of vinegar or wine will attract the fruit flies into the container. Once they fall in, they will not be in a position to come out. The dish soap assist in efficient trapping of the flies. You will need to place several traps so as to win the fruit flies battle.
Method 5: Using Fruit flies chemical.
This method is not very nice to use. However, you can use it once in a while if the fruit flies problem escalate.
Buy recommended fruit flies chemical from authorized sellers and spray areas with fruit flies. Ensure you close the place for sometimes for sometimes to ensure the chemical works effective to kill the available egg and fruit flies.
This method is fast though not environmental friendly as it causes pollution and may also lead to food poisoning if sprayed over the food. Always keep such chemicals away from children.
How do you prevent your place/house from fruit lies?
Prevention is better than cure in any place. If you really want to succeed in preventing occurrence of fruit flies, you much ensure that you eliminate all sources that attracts them into your environment. I have highlighted various ways that will assist you succeed in eliminating the fruit flies attractants. These include:
1. Cover/treat your garbage pit.
It is necessary to cover your garbage pit appropriately. This help prevent emission of smell that attract the fruit flies into the vicinity.
It is also important to treat the pit with the right garbage treatment so as to kill the smell emitted.
2. Clean all Damp areas.
As we have seen, fruit flies thrives very well in damp areas too. All the cleaning rags and mops should be stored dry to reduce the dampness.
Keep a close and frequent check on your kitchen, toilet, bathroom or any drainage pipe to identify any leakage that could result to dampness, which contribute to breeding of these flies.
3. Clean fruits and vegetables from groceries.
Ensure that you clear well vegetables and fruits purchased from various vegetables before they get to your house. This prevents any fruit flies or their eggs that could be attached to them.
You also need to be very observant when you are doing any of these purchases so as to avoid buying from vendors with theses fruit flies.
4. Use appropriate food storage.
You need to store your food in the best way that prevent them from fermenting. Fruits that are ripening should be enclosed appropriately not to emit excess smell that may attract fruit flies in the vicinity.
In case of refrigeration, let all product that can be placed in a fridge be secure in it efficiently so as to minimize scent that can attract these fruit flies in the room.
5. Ensure you store your dish clean always.
Dirty dishes causes a lot of fruit flies attraction. Dished that accumulate during supper and breakfast should be washed immediately before they start smelling. This will minimize attraction of fruit flies in the evening or dawn- these are the time they work best.
Fruit flies are very small insects that come from bush hideouts into the house through windows and doors; from Vegetable, fruit trees and flowers, from rotting of fermenting food stuff in the house; from groceries through food brought into the house or from whether change in an area that provides a room for their growth.
These flies works best in dim light at dusk or dawn. It is necessary to prevent fruit flies using appropriate ways given. Fruit flies are irritate but you can get rid of them or prevent.