Flies are a major source of disease worldwide; this is because they not only want to eat your food, but they also love to eat filth, such as animal droppings, rotting vegetable matter, and dead carcasses. The fact is, the fly buzzing around inside your house, may have recently been out in your yard, feasting on your dog’s waste.
In addition to spreading bacteria clinging to their feet and bodies, flies often defecate and vomit where they land to feed. In this way, flies can spread many diseases.
Some of the common diseases spread by flies in the U.S. include:
More exotic diseases spread by flies include:
To stop flies from spreading disease, it’s imperative to keep them out of your home and your yard. Keep your garbage cans clean and covered, keep any outdoor drains clean and empty, and pick up any dog poop in the yard. To avoid letting flies in, make sure all window and door screens are in good repair.
However, if you’re dealing with an established fly infestation, professional pest control may be the best option. Improperly handling pesticides, or using the wrong products, can be very unsafe for homeowners. Pest control technicians are trained to deal with fly problems safely and effectively.
House flies typically live for only 3 weeks and are most active during the summer. An adult female fly can lay 50 to 100 eggs at a time and around 500 eggs during her short life. Fly eggs are laid in rotting organic matter, and hatch in just 12 hours. The larvae, called maggots, feed on the rotting organic matter. The maggot goes through three larval stages, finally forming a cocoon. Adult houseflies typically go from egg to adult in just 10 days.
These small flies feed on rotting fruit, and often get inside your home along with your groceries. They can multiply quickly, and once inside your home, fruit flies can lay eggs and reproduce in multiple places. You’ll commonly find them on or near ripe or rotting fruit, but they can also be found swarming around trash cans and recycling bins, under the refrigerator, and even in the garbage disposal or sink drain.
Once a home is infested with fruit flies, all of the breeding areas must be located and treated. Unless every breeding site is removed, the fruit fly problem will continue, no matter how much insecticide is sprayed on the adults.
Horseflies are big, and they bite. Female horse flies feast on blood, leaving both people and animals with nasty bites. On the other hand, male horse flies simply feed on flower nectar and pollen.
As the name suggests, horse flies can be a real problem around horses and other livestock. A bad infestation can leave the animals anemic due to blood loss.
Horseflies can spread blood-borne viral, bacterial, worm, and protozoan diseases, such as the equine infectious anemia virus. There have also been rare reports of horsefly bites leading to a fatal anaphylaxis in humans.
Sticky fly traps and ultraviolet light traps can help to reduce houseflies and fruit fly populations. Install light traps at least 15 feet away from doors and in a dark area, away from bright light. Also place any type of fly traps at least 5 feet away from food preparation areas, to reduce the risk of attracting flies to your food.
Insecticides can also help control fly infestation. Fly baits are usually sugar-based and contain chemicals that attract adult flies. The flies feed on the bait and are killed by the insecticide.
Many pyrethroid-based insecticide sprays can also kill flies around your home. However, any insecticide spray should be used with extreme caution.
While there are many things you can do to help control fly infestations around your home or business, professional intervention may be needed.