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Flies In Your Home: What You Need To Know

Annoying Pest

What is the deal with flies? They're so irritating! They land on you; you jiggle. They land on you again; you twitch. They land on you again, and you start swinging your hands like a maniac. What do they think that means? "Yay! I love flies?" For crying out loud flies, stop landing on people! You're just asking to be squished! I think when the term "bugged" was coined, flies were the "bug" from which the inspiration was drawn.

But there is an even uglier side to flies--a side many people are unaware of. They don't just bounce into your face, buzz annoyingly around the ceiling light, and land on your pancakes. They do something far more dark and sinister--something foul and unimaginable. The process by which a fly consumes food is disgusting. If you're squeamish, skip to the next paragraph, because what you're about to read may be disturbing to some readers. Okay. Are you ready? Flies don't have a mouth or teeth, so they can't eat food like we do. They have something called a proboscis. It is sort of like a big fat straw. For a fly to get food into its belly, it must first empty its stomach contents onto what they intend to digest. The stomach acid breaks down the food matter, so the fly can suck it up with their straw. They suck it up! All of it! That's nasty! Is it not bad enough that they were just in the trash a minute ago, standing on a rotted apple, and now they're dancing around on my buttered toast? They have to regurgitate on it too! What is the deal with flies?

Okay. Here are 5 ways you can get rid of those flies.

  1. Seal trash cans. Most people know that it is good to have sealed cans outside, so wildlife and bugs don't get into it, right? However some are unaware that an open trash in the kitchen or bathroom invites flies to come and lay their eggs inside the house. Always keep your trash sealed at all times.
  2. If you have kitchen trash with a cover that swings, flies can still get in there, especially once the trash gets full, and the cover is lifted open slightly. An added precaution to reduce flies is to put food matter into a sealed bag before you put it in that trash can. Flies don't care about paper, dust, and other household waste. They are only interested in food waste. If your food is rotting inside a plastic bag, flies can't get to it. Save your plastic grocery bags, and the next time you're tossing out a banana peel or leftovers, seal that food waste in a grocery bag first. You will be amazed how this tiny step can reduce your fly problem.
  3. Put up fly strips. They're unsightly, but they're better than having those flies land on your food.
  4. Rinse off your dishes as you go. Rotting food matter on an unclean plate is fertile egg-laying territory for flies.
  5. Keep your counters clean and your floors swept, as much as possible. Spilled butter, ketchup, and mayonnaise--as well as those sandwich and toast crumbs--draw flies in. Crumbs that fall to the floor may be almost invisible to your eyes because they are several feet below you, but to a fly, those crumbs are big enough to be lunch.

Flies are attracted to rot and decay, and they lay their eggs in rot and decay. These are not bugs you want to ignore. Use these common-sense measures to reduce or eradicate the fly population in your home. If you're still getting flies from outside your home, find out how a pest control professional can keep flies and other disgusting bugs out, by spraying the perimeter. You don't have to live with flies.