Fruit flies belong to the genus Drosophila and these tiny insects can often be found in your garden or home. They have a lifespan of 38 to 40 days.
Fruit flies reproduce and multiply quickly and they only take eight to 10 days to mature. One female fruit fly can lay a whopping 500 eggs on the surface of a piece of fruit, highlighting the need to eliminate these pests immediately.
When left untreated, a fruit fly infestation can spread bacteria since the pests favor manure and other feces that may contain bacteria like E. coli.
Fruit flies then carry the bacteria with them. After mating, female fruit flies inject batches of eggs into fresh fruit, which contaminates the fruit with feces and bacteria.
There are black, brown, and yellow fruit flies, most of which are about 1/10 to ¼-inch in size. Fruit flies have red eyes and they are usually smaller than other flies. True to their name, fruit flies love to gather around fruit.
The abdomen of a female fruit fly is longer than a male's, but both have the same black rings around the abdomen.
Fruit flies breed on:
After you identify breeding sites, use a mixture of borax and water to clean the area. Clean trash cans in your garden with bleach.
Remove dead animals or plants that may attract large swarms of fruit flies. Keep fruit flies out of your garden by harvesting produce immediately. Don't let your crops sit in the garden too long that they become overripe.
Cover foods that need to be stored at room temperature to prevent adult fruit flies from laying eggs on them.
You can get rid of fruit flies by either trapping or repelling them using the methods detailed below. (Related: How to prevent bug bites in the wild.)
The lures below contain acetic acid, which is found in overripe fruits. Here are some of the most effective fruit fly attractants:
You need four to five traps spread all over a small garden. Use more if your garden is bigger.
Cut any rotten fruit into several slices, then leave two or more slices in a paper one trap.
Alternatively, repellents will keep fruit flies away from your garden or home.
Lemongrass oil has fly repellent properties. Either plant lemongrass around or within your garden or purchase lemongrass oil.
You can also replace lemongrass oil with citronella or eucalyptus oil. However, the former is more effective at repelling fruit flies.
Eliminate fruit flies from your home and garden and prevent potential health risks using these simple methods.