Summer has come to a close, meaning the problem of mosquitos lingering around will (hopefully) not be as big a problem with fall approaching. But what isn’t seasonal? Fruit flies. Everyone hates those pesky little flies that you’re swatting for days upon days. Knowing the preventative measures to take before bringing your produce home, may keep you from having to fan your face while trying to watch T.V. No worries, I will share preventative measures you can take to avoid fruit flies, and what you should do if you already have a fruit fly problem.
Preventing fruit flies: Don’t invite them in.
- Don’t buy produce from the store that already has a fruit fly party on it.
If you see fruit flies on the produce you buy, there will most likely be fruit fly eggs on your produce when you bring it home.
- As soon as you get home, wash your produce with warm water and mild soap.
As soon as you unpack your groceries, WASH YOUR PRODUCE. You can bring fruit flies into your home unknowingly by the flies’ eggs on your fresh fruit and veggies. This is also a wonderful reason you should wash produce before you eat it. No one wants to eat fruit fly eggs or fecal matter.
- Keep your kitchen tidy regularly.
We all get a little tired in the evenings after a long day and decide to just leave the dishes, pans, or wine glass in the sink to wash the next day. This will actually attract fruit flies from outside your home, and encourage them to come inside your home. If you can bear to stay awake for just a few extra minutes, do your dishes and clean up dinner before going to bed at the end of the night.
I already have fruit flies, so now what?
- Clean vigorously. The more you can clean your kitchen area after the fruit flies have made unwelcome company in your home the better. Clean all surfaces, dishes, rags, dispose of old fruit, and wash all good fruit again. The reason fruit flies become a huge and overpowering annoyance, is because their lifecycle is very short. You need to eliminate all chances of fruit fly eggs from hatching and reproducing again.
- Set a trap. You can trap the living fruit flies by either making a cone cylinder and placing it into a jar, or covering a jar with plastic wrap and poking a few tiny holes with a toothpick or knife. Fill the jar with vinegar, rotting fruit, jam, or wine. Fruit flies are attracted to the smell of fermenting, so you can use anything that is rotting or sweet smelling if you don’t have any vinegar. The trap works because the fruit flies will be attracted to the smell and will find a way to get in, but they won’t be clever enough to get themselves out, and will eventually drown.
- Clean again. Cleaning is really important after you’ve caught all the fruit flies, because you want to make sure there are no eggs in your kitchen waiting to hatch. Keep and maintain a clean kitchen for the next few days, and leave out the trap to make sure you catch the stragglers.
I hope these tips and tricks will help you steer clear of fruit flies who try to make an unwelcome entrance into your home.
Maya Rodgers prides herself as a wife, the mother of two children, a pet owner, and pest control consultant for Terminix. She enjoys sharing her expertise in pest control by sharing useful tips and tricks with bloggers. She also loves writing and living as green as possible.
You can check out Maya’s blog at Pets and Pests for additional tips and tricks for eliminating fruit flies and other pesky pets.