Fruit flies can be irritating pests. You start by seeing one little dot zipping around in the air and making a tiny black silhouette in front of your television or computer screen. Quickly, that one dot becomes dozens of dots zooming around in the air. Has this happened to you? Is it happening right now? It can have you perplexed as to where all those flies are coming from? Well, today we're going to help you solve the mystery. Here's why you have fruit flies in your Charlotte home.

fruit fly eating a pear
fruit flies eating a banana

Fruit Flies Are Drawn To Fermentation

If you open a bottle of wine inside your home, a fruit fly on the outside of your home may smell it. They use their antennae to sense fermented odors from a surprising distance. If a fly is on the outside of your home trying to get in, it is small enough to get through tiny holes in your screens, or it can slip past gaps between your screens and your window frames. If it explores your exterior doors, it can get through gaps in your weatherstripping or go underneath your doors past damaged door sweeps.

Sometimes fruit flies are drawn into a garage first. If you have recycling items in your garage, the scent can attract these flies, especially beer and wine containers. Fruit flies may also be attracted to trash bins that are kept in the garage. They can breed in the organic matter in your trash.

The scent of fermentation brings fruit flies close to your home. As they explore the source of the smells, they can find breeding sites such as exterior trash bins or compost. If they do, they can reproduce near your home and increase the potential for problems in your home since they are able to go right in through your door when you go in or out.

Fruit Fly Development

Once inside your home, a fruit fly can find many places to lay eggs and it can lay as many as 500 eggs at a time. So it only takes one fly to create a swarm of flies.

  • The eggs hatch into larvae.

  • The larvae feed on the food source the eggs were deposited in, such as a dollop of ketchup on a paper plate in the trash or a piece of fruit sitting on the kitchen table.

  • In three days, the larvae can become pupae.

  • In under three days, the pupae can become adult flies and take to the air. 

The entire life cycle can take place in about a week. If you don't remove trash from your kitchen weekly, fruit flies can use it as a breeding site. This might be why you have a swarm of fruit flies in your Charlotte home. If you display fruit on your kitchen table or island rather than putting it in the refrigerator, this may also be why you're seeing a lot of fruit flies. But these two breeding sites are far from the only places fruit flies can breed in your home.

Sometimes Fruit Flies Hitchhike

You can purchase produce from the store that already has eggs. These eggs can sit without hatching because they're refrigerated before these products get to your home. In the warm temperatures of your home, the eggs hatch. They may also hatch when activated by the ripening of the produce. Within a short time, you can have more than a hundred flies zipping around inside your home. That's why these flies are so mysterious.

How Do You Stop Fruit Flies? 

  • Remove exterior trash from your property weekly.

  • Keep compost properly mixed to remove smells.

  • Keep recycling bins clean.

  • Keep trash bins clean.

  • Keep screens, weatherstripping, and door sweeps in good condition.

  • Practice good sanitation in your home.

  • Store fruit in the fridge.

  • Store potatoes in a sealed container.

  • Remove interior trash weekly.

If you take these steps, you can prevent an infestation. But what if you already have fruit flies? It can be difficult to locate breeding sites because fruit flies can breed in many surprising locations. All they need is a little organic material and about a week of development time. If you can't find where fruit flies are breeding, reach out to Go-Forth Pest Control. We use strategies and products that are field-tested and known to achieve the best results. Reach out to us with questions or to schedule a visit. We provide industry-leading pest control service to Charlotte and we're here to help you with all your pest control needs.


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