About Fruit Flies
What Are Fruit Flies & Vinegar Flies?
The Fruit Fly (Drosophila melanogaster) and Dark-Eyed Fruit fly or Vinegar fly are tiny (3-4mm) and commonly associated with fruit - hence the name. The fruit fly D. melanogaster has characteristic, orange eyes (pictured above), making identification quite easy.
Where Do Fruit Flies Live?
Fruit Flies live in many environments, homes and businesses. This small, annoying fly enters homes and premises through open windows, doors, wall vents and even inside deliveries!
Complete exclusion is unlikely in most cases, so good housekeeping and hygiene paramount.
Likely areas for Fruit Fly infestation and breeding sites include compost heaps, trash bins, and other waste receptacles. Fruit flies become attracted to the fermenting and spoiled wine, beer, and dairy products.
Sweet, rotting and fermenting products provide the basis for many homemade fruit fly traps.
Where Are Fruit Flies In My Kitchen?
Spillages of suitable foods and liquids frequently occur in kitchens, bars and beer cellars. These residues quickly build up under bins, lino, vinyl, the lips of sinks, or between the bottom of base unit plinths and the floor.
What Are Fruit Fly Infestations A Sign Of?
Flying insect activity of any kind is a crucial indicator of quality and one of the first warning signs that council food safety officers routinely consider.
Poor hygiene or neglected maintenance encourages nuisance flies, meaning they are an early sign of deteriorating or consistently ignored safe practice in both commercial and residential premises.
Fastidious house-keeping makes a considerable difference to the success of any pest management or fly extermination programme.
Are Fruit Flies Dangerous?
The common fruit fly is quite harmless and presents as a nuisance, more than an important vector or distributor of disease.
Because disease risk is low, small numbers of these flying pests often get ignored by restaurant owners, etc.
Customers and visitors, however, will be less than thrilled at the presence of flies, harassing them, while trying to enjoy a romantic meal.
Online reviews on this subject can very quickly, cripple a business.
How Do You Control Fruit Flies?
One of the most common questions we get asked is "How to Kill Fruit Flies". At first glance, you can understand a person's frustration with these flying intruders, but extermination is not the answer in itself.
The real question should always be - How do You Prevent Fruit Flies?
Regular surveillance, maintenance of defective equipment seals, cleaning activities, stock rotation, and effective waste management all have their merits in preventing infestations from ever occurring.
In your home, prevention is a straightforward process. Remove waste regularly, clean around sinks, under bins, worktop plinths and check under sinks for leaks. Keep fruit fresh at all times with visual inspection and regular rotation.
Worktop recycling bins have become common, as have waste bins under kitchen counters. These quickly develop residues that encourage insects of many different kinds.
Surveillance and pest monitoring include proactive measures such as discreet electronic fly killing devices, window netting and fruit fly traps.
Control measures require a negligible ongoing cost to maintain and are essential to reassuring customers about commitments to cleanliness, and to demonstrate due diligence to enforcement authorities.
Fruit Flies? Case Summaries.
1. A restaurant reported flies around the bar area, and we discovered a faulty beer line.
2. A restaurant reported fly activity around a bar area, and we discovered neglected hygiene practices. We refused to spray the open bar area for obvious safety reasons, without a deep clean first. They ignored our advice and several years on; they still have the problem!
3. A customer had flies swarming in a kitchen and conservatory. They turned out to be "Bark Flies" from a decorative wood pile!
4. A customer had a huge fly infestation in a bathroom. The soil pipe had come away from the toilet, filling the cellar with raw sewage. The flies were "Drain Flies".
It becomes clear from these case studies that professional ID of flies is crucial to their control. Sometimes you need to look at other, less obvious causes of fly infestation to eliminate it quickly.