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Category Archives for "Fruit Flies"

Fruit Fly Traps That Work- Homemade Traps, Recipes & Product Reviews

The warm days of summer, when fruits and vegetables are fresh and readily available are a true pleasure– the nasty little fruit flies that swarm in with the heat and seasonal produce are anything but. Fruit flies are the kind of pest you ignore for a couple days, swatting at them when they appear in the kitchen, only to realize you have a true infestation on your hands. They come up out of the drain, swarm around the fruit bowl, and crawl all along your walls and windows.

You have a few choices for how to get rid of the fruit flies in your kitchen. Buying a trap is the least hassle and not very expensive, but making your own is even cheaper and may not require you to even take a trip to the store. A store-bought and homemade fruit fly trap are going to work the same way by luring the bugs in then drowning them.  You have three main options:

  1. Buy a commercial, ready-made fruit fly trap and set it out in your kitchen
  2. Make your own trap out of household ingredients and supplies
  3. Give into the spirit of the lazy days of summer and wait for them to disappear

Apple Cider Vinegar, Wine, Milk, and Rotting Fruit Traps

Apple cider vinegar is one of the most popular ingredients for killing off fruit flies in your kitchen. Take a bottle of apple cider vinegar (even if it is mostly empty, according to Good Housekeeping and rubber band a piece of plastic wrap around the opening to secure the top. Poke holes in the plastic wrap so the fruit flies can go in but cannot exit the bottle. They should drown inside the vinegar. If you don’t use plastic wrap you can add a little dish soap to the mixture; the soap will hold down the flies and drown them. The only downside to this method is sometimes the flies do not get around to the bottle or they manage to escape through the holes in the plastic wrap. Plus, apple cider vinegar can get a little smelly in the heat.

If you don’t keep apple cider vinegar on hand you can try a similar method with red wine. Just keep a nearly empty bottle uncorked and the flies should go in without being able to escape back up the long bottle neck. Some people have a lot of success with a milk, sugar, and pepper mixture like the one cooked up by the household experts at Everyday Roots.

If the fruit flies are so fond of the fruit rotting in your kitchen, maybe you should let them have at it. The trick is to create a trap where the flies try to get at the fruit but are unable to escape. Take a piece of turned fruit and place it in the bottom of a wide-mouth jar. Using a piece of paper, make a cone with a bottom hole about an inch wide. The pests should fly right into the fruit fly trap without being able to escape. Careful when you clean this one up, however, so that any flies still alive do not escape back into your kitchen.

Fruit Fly Prevention

Here are a few simple steps to follow to ensure fruit flies don’t return, or at least don’t find a hospitable place to live when they travel in with your produce:

  • Keep a clean kitchen with no residue left over from rotting fruit or dirty dishes in the sink, according to Moyer Indoor and Outdoor Pest.
  • Throw away any fruits and vegetables as soon as they start to turn
  • Sanitize trash cans each time the garbage is taken out
  • Treat your drains with either ammonia or bleach (but not both together!) by letting a cleaning solution sit in the drain or garbage disposal for about a half hour before rinsing

You can also use a spray made of essential oils to keep fruit flies off your counters and walls. Lemongrass, for instance, is a natural fruit fly repellent that smells great to humans when used as a kitchen cleaner. Use a homemade lemongrass mixture in a spray bottle to wipe down kitchen surfaces and hopefully the fruit flies will stay away from places where you cook while the traps do their work.

Fruit flies may be inevitable but they don’t have to take over your kitchen whenever it is warm. Whether you purchase a trap from the store or drown the little pests with a homemade setup, address your fruit fly problem sooner than later– and take the proper preventative measures– to make your summer months a little more enjoyable and a little less pesky.

 

Further Fruit Fly Resources:

  1. Fruit Fly Trapping Guidelines – USDA.gov
  2. How to Get Rid of Fruit Flies: A Complete Guide – NeverPest.com

How to Get Rid of Fruit Flies with Vinegar, Traps & More Tips

If you have ever battled an annoying and embarrassing infestation of fruit flies in your home, you know they are not easy to get rid of. They can breed quickly and live long after you’ve gotten rid of the food you suspected created their presence in the first place. Hopefully these tips will help you to get rid of fruit flies and prevent them from returning in the future.

Empty all recycling bins and clean them.

The fruit fly looks for anything that is sweet or fermented and provides a little moisture. Recycling bins meet all the requirements a fruit fly wants and needs to set up their habitat. Soda cans, fruit juice bottles, beer cans are all perfect homes for the pesky little fruit fly.

Empty out your recycling bin and get rid of all the containers inside. Clean the recycling bin itself by removing all the residue left behind from those containers. When you start to re-add recyclable containers; wash or rinse them first before throwing them into the bin. Don’t re-start creating the residue these flies will look for to start another home.

Get rid of old sponges, dishrags, and mops.

If your sponges, dishrags and mops are old; you should replace them or wash them routinely. The fruit fly can breed on sour sponges or rags. Fruit flies breed very quickly and if not removed right away will be extremely hard to get rid of. Understanding how these insects develop will help you in your fight to be rid of them.

Remove compost scraps from inside home.

Composting is a great idea. If you compost your kitchen scraps and find you have fruit flies flying around; then it is time to clean out the bin and move it outdoors. Ideally it would make it more successful for you to take the scraps to the pile each time you collect a pile. If you do not want to make the trip to the pile after every meal; then try placing the bin outside and keep a little distance from your door.

Get rid of rotting fruits and vegetables.

When you start seeing fruit flies it most likely means you have rotting fruits and vegetables. Any fruit or vegetable you have sitting out that has broken skins or been cut open must go. This means removing from the house, not just throwing into a compost bin or garbage can in the kitchen.

Put out a few apple vinegar traps in infested areas.

The best way to get rid of the fruit flies is to remove the adults. The one good thing for you when trying to get rid of fruit flies is that they are not very smart. If something smells rotten or like it is fermenting they will dive right in. You can place cider vinegar traps around areas you see them flying and you’ll be able to get rid of a lot of the flies fast. The traps are easy to make; here’s all you need:

  • A glass
  • A plastic baggie
  • A rubber band
  • Apple cider vinegar

Put a small amount of apple cider vinegar into the glass. The fruit fly will not be able to resist the smell of the vinegar. Take some scissors and snip a small enough corner off for the fruit fly to crawl through, but not crawl back out of. Place the baggie over the glass so that the snipped corner is pushed down into glass forming a funnel, but does not touch the vinegar. The rubber band should then be put around the baggie securing it to the glass.

Place this trap where you see the most activity; you may even want to make a couple of them if the infestation is heavy. The flies will go into the glass through the hole and become trapped. You should notice a good accumulation of dead flies in the vinegar within a few days.

There are other types of traps that can be very effective for getting rid of fruit flies.

Vinegar and dish soap

Place a bowl of vinegar on your counter with three drops of dish soap added to it. The soap will make it impossible for the fly to float and they will sink and drown.

Paper cone and piece of a fruit

Place a very ripe piece of fruit and a little vinegar in a jar. Take a piece of paper and shape into a cone and place it into the jar with the narrow point facing down. The fly will go in through the opening and not be able to get out.

Red Wine

Fruit flies love the smell of wine. If you leave an open bottle out that has a skinny neck and small amount of wine at the bottom, you will be able to trap quite a few flies.

Milk, Sugar and Pepper

There is a favorite of many found in the Old Farmer’s Almanac to trap fruit flies. Take a pint of milk, four ounces of raw sugar and two ounces of ground pepper and simmer all together in small saucepan for ten minutes. Pour into a shallow dish after the ten minutes. The fruit flies will be attracted to this mixture and drown.

Aunt Fannie’s Fly Punch

Health Beauty and Environmental Sciences chemists at the Good Housekeeping Research Institute found the Fly Punch is one of the best fruit fly remedies. It is an all-natural product and comes in a stand-up pouch. You simply rip off the top, put it on a cupboard where you see activity of flies and “count the bodies.”

Check potato and onion storage areas.

Root vegetables are normally kept in cool, dark bins or cupboards. Make sure these areas are checked if you see any sign of fruit flies. It will only take one old potato to start your infestation of the fruit flies. Any of these vegetables that display soft or mushy spots should be disposed of.

Make sure all home-canned products are completely sealed.

Not all people can their own products, but for those of you who do and see signs of fruit flies, check to make sure all your jars are sealed properly. The fly will detect this unsealed product long before you do, so their presence may indicate one or more of your jars is not sealed safely.

Clean your kitchen thoroughly.

Food bits can accumulate in a kitchen and if you are having trouble ridding your home of the fruit fly it may take some good cleaning to get rid of all the food bits. Clean all areas like:

  • Lip of the kitchen sink
  • Burner drip pans
  • Underneath the stove top
  • Check under the refrigerator for spilled spots

These uninvited pests can become numerous if not removed; however we hope these tips show you there is hope getting rid of them and keeping them away. Knowing more about how the flies thrive is going to help you remove these desirable areas from your home- along with the flies.