Goddamn flies! How do you deal?

I foolishly took way too long to take out the trash (I have this thing about not taking it out until it’s full, and living alone as I do, I take way too long to do so), so I got flies - these tiny guys who’re damn maneuverable and quite fast. I managed to get the can outside, but four or so of 'em are now flying about my apartment. Swatting has been a frustrating task at best, especially since I’m just using a rolled up magazine.

Any better way to kill 'em? Should I just wait for winter (or otherwise for them to die)? Yeah, yeah, I know, ounce of prevention. Consider me sick and tired enough to remember that next time.

I used to make a game of it - throw rolled up socks at them. You hardly ever hit one but you don’t break anything and it becomes kind of fun.

By the way they aren’t fast they are quick. They only fly at about 4mph but they are quick at changing direction. Someone told me years ago in relation to large footballers, “you don’t have to be fast you have to be quick, like a fly, to be any good.”

Sounds like fruit flies. They should just die/go away a day or two after you’ve removed all trash, fruit, etc. unless they’ve taken up residence in a seldom-used drain or something.

If you’re impatient, there are quick, easy traps you can devise with vinegar or fruit as the bait. If you’re not industrious, and enjoy the thrill of the hunt, turn off all the lights, draw all the shades, and turn on your TV, which is the perfect hunting ground. They’ll be drawn to the light (assuming there is no food/garbage still attracting them) and you can sit there near the TV with a magazine and pick 'em off easily.

Considering that they’re inside, winter is meaningless. And by then, they’d have a chance to reproduce a few times.

Chances are they won’t survive long if you remove their food supply. They can’t breed if there is nowhere to lay their eggs that will provide food to the larvae when they hatch.

If you absolutely can’t wait this is a simple but effective fruit fly trap. It’s basically just a cardboard tube covered with glue. A granular pheromone is added when you are ready to place the trap. That odor attracts the files and they stick to the glue. Problem solved.

You can make one of these at home practically for free using an ordinary cardboard paper towel tube. Just coat it with some sticky adhesive and put a little bit of old meat inside of it. They will find that just as attractive as the pheromone and it will only cost about 10 cents to make instead of 10 bucks at that website.

Reported for NSFW material.


I keep a plastic grocery bag in the freezer, and put compostable stuff in there. When the regular 13 gallon kitchen bin is full, there’s just enough room at the top of the trash bag after taking it out of the bin, to pull that freezer bag out and put it in the bag to go out. I take trash out probably every 7 to 10 days.

Whenever I get a stray fly buzzing about, if Nimbus the Bug Hunter doesn’t catch it and dispatch it post-haste like he normally does, I have fun with a rolled up kitchen towel. I whip it at the flying thing (fly, wasp, moth, whatever) and with a little practice it’s surprisingly effective, and way more interesting than keeping a boring old fly swatter around.

Don’t visit Australia.

I see what you did there - I think I should have broken the link to the fly trap site.

I like good old fashioned flypaper when we’re camping. It’s ugly as sin, but effective.

But I’m digging the paper towel tube DIY. Crazyhorse, any suggestion for a specific stays-sticky adhesive?

ETA: I wonder…if you put the “sticky” and the bait on the inside of a paper towel tube, would they fly *inside *and get stuck? That would be far more aesthetically pleasing…

You could always get a spider :slight_smile: But then you’ll have the problem of having to always be dirty enough for the spider to survive, plus maybe making sure the spider has a source of water (do spiders need to drink water?) So basically even if you had a spider, if you went on vacation the spider would most likely die and you’d have to start over.

Unless of course you purposely left out water and insects for your spider. Which I have done in the past for lizards. (The water thing, not the insect thing.)

I had a window that was broken and the condo association took several months to repair it, and lizards would come in and get lost, and I would find shrivelled up lizard husks. Until I left out water for them, not as a way of being humane, but because it was less gross than finding dead lizards and live cockroaches.

I was thinking stay for an Australian summer, come back and appreciate the tiny flies that don’t dive-bomb your mouth everytime you open up.

Wal Mart sells a tennis racket type thing with a metal grid that is electrified by a battery. It’s a personal bug zapper. I use the TV ta night to lure the flies to the screen then place the racket close to the screen and make them fly into it. Very satisfying.

Save up some empty plastic bread bags or other plastic bags. Keep one in your freezer.

All dry garbage can go into the regular wastebasket. All wet garbage goes into plastic bag in freezer.

When take out garbage (or when plastic bag full), that goes out along with.

The electronic bug zapper is the MOST FUN. An extremely testosterone-laden toy, and you can keep your man deliriously happy for HOURS. We have given several as gifts.

If you have a Harbor Freight Tools nearby, they sell from $3 to $6 each. They do eat a lot of D-cell batteries, but the entertainment value is priceless.

one thing that works well for wet garbage is an ice bucket with a tight lid or a small plastic bag as a liner. it doesn’t take long to fill so it is not in your kitchen for long. a plastic bag liner can be tied shut between uses or a tight lid closed.

Fruit Fly Hunting as a game.

Soap up hands with dawn or other liquid soap.
Snatch them out of the air (they stick to the soap)
Smoosh them on hand to be sure.

I usually then transfer the dead ones to the back of my hand and keep hunting until I get 8-12, then go wash them off and re-wet or re-soap, depending on need and amount of prey.

Otherwise, your hand will dry enough in 3-5 minutes that you’ll need to run at least a trickle of water over them to re-wet them.

Don’t get too wet and sloppy or you’re spraying soapy water everywhere when you try to grab them out of the air.

When we get them in the kitchen, I leave the room for a few minutes to let them get good and settled–they congregate on the cabinet fronts.

Then I come in with my vacuum cleaner and suck them all up.

I don’t know how well the sticky stuff would work - fruit flies are actually careful about getting stuck. I’ve watched them carefully avoid a thin layer of honey intended to trap them.

I seem to be in the minority but I don’t like those cone ones or the holes poked in saran wrap ones. I like a type that you poke holes in the bottom of a opaque plastic cup and the top is completely sealed with clear plastic wrap with bait set in the bottom( I usually raise it up on toothpicks a little). The cup should be opaque so that the only way they think to go is to the light from the sealed top. Or you can just buy traps, lol.

They breed in the muck in the sink drain. Bleach actually doesn’t work. Pour boiling water down them a few times through the day. In addition to making sure the kitchen is clean, you should also make sure it’s all dry around the sink area so that the only place they can go for water is deep in the sink, where they will hopefully be boiled alive.

Beat me to it, but I didn’t realize Walmart sold them, so even cooler :smiley: