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Friday, March 4, 2022

How to Spot Fruit Flies, Drain Flies, and Fungus Gnats

As the winter weather thaws and springtime arrives, odds are you’re getting out and about. But flies on the other hand? They’re heading indoors.

If you’ve been unlucky enough to find these unwelcome houseguests in your drain or trash bin, you might be wondering: how do you identify and get rid of insects like fruit flies, drain flies, and fungus gnats? Here are some quick and easy tips to help you get rid of some of the most common — and most bothersome — flies.

Fruit Flies

There are two common fruit flies — the red-eyed fruit fly and the dark-eyed fruit fly. Both types are brownish-black and have striped abdomens. They are similar in size to house flies but slightly smaller, ranging from ⅛-inch long to 3/16-inch long. Fruit flies are drawn to rotting food, and areas like garbage cans, sink drains, disposals, and compost bins.

The best way to solve your fruit fly problem is to keep your garbage can, sink, or kitchen free of any debris. Wash out food and drink containers, seal trash bins, and take the garbage out often. As their name suggests, fruit flies love fruit! So be sure to place your fruit in the fridge when not eaten immediately, rather than leaving it out on the counter.

Drain Flies

Drain flies are a little different from fruit flies in that they have hairy bodies and large wings. Think Jeff Goldblum in “The Fly.” Another insect without a creative name, the drain fly loves to linger inside of — you guessed it! — your drain. They thrive in dark, damp conditions, and you can find them in sink or floor drains, or any area with open plumbing.

The best way to keep drain flies out of your home is to use an enzyme drain cleaner. A few hours after applying the drain cleaner, flush warm water down the pipe to eliminate sludge. Once your drain is clean, the flies should be gone for good.

Fungus Gnats

If you spot a swarm of bugs flying above a houseplant, chances are you have fungus gnats. These black or brown insects love moist soil, which protects them as they develop. Fungus gnats are a nuisance to your green thumb since they severely damage the root system of potted plants. They fly erratically and look like they may be bouncing around.

If you have fungus gnats, the best preventative measure you can take is to cut back on watering your plants. Also, avoid adding water-retaining material such as peat moss when potting a plant. You can also check your potted plants for fungus gnats before bringing them inside by removing them from the pot and looking for larvae.

Let Us Help You Control Flies This Spring

If these methods don’t prevent fruit flies, drain flies, or fungus gnats from invading your home, it may be time to reach out to the experts. We’re here to help. Call Stark Exterminators today.