Danger: Fruit Flies

Fruit flies are annoying and sometimes easily gotten rid of. However, sometimes they can be quite a pain to get rid of and can actually pose some health concerns.

fruit-flies

Everybody at one point has been swarmed by fruit flies. It’s annoying, and usually just requires throwing away your rotting fruit. However, sometimes they pose an actual threat to your health. This article will describe the causes for fruit flies, the possible dangers, and how to get rid of them.

The Causes

The answer to this is a bit more complex than you would have guessed. Yes, rotting fruit attracts fruit flies. Moreover, rotting foods in your drain can also attract a lot of fruit flies. But fruit flies aren’t limited to fruit. The reason why they like fruit is because of the sugar, thus, anything with sugar is attractive to fruit flies. Plain sugar isn’t that appealing to fruit flies, but when it ferments, it begins to turn into alcohol which fruit flies love. So basically, in my mind, they should be called sugar flies or better yet, alcohol flies. This means that an old open soda pop can also attract these annoying buggers.

The reason why fruit flies generally go for fruit is because since they don’t have teeth, it is easier for them to ‘straw’ up  the sugar/alcohol from the increasingly liquidy fruit. Humidity also attracts fruit flies and therefore if you have empty beer bottles or fruit lying around in a humid environment, you are bound to get fruit flies.

The Dangers

Fruit flies cannot bite, so you don’t have to worry about that. By themselves, they actually aren’t unhealthy to eat. The main issue with fruit flies is that they of course carry diseases, bacteria, and viruses. Think about it: these fruit flies enjoy rotting foods and consequently may be exposed to bacteria, disease, etc. These same fruit flies land on just about everything in your house, which includes your toothbrush, plates, cutlery, and glasses. You then ingest food or liquid off of these objects. Not just that, once the bacteria is transmitted onto these objects, the bacteria begins to expand. Thus, you are essentially eating those rotting foods yourself.

The Solutions

There are many suggested sprays but from my experience, these just aren’t effective. Another solution is to try to vacuum them up, but that is not a long term solution at all and probably isn’t even worth your time or electricity usage. The following steps should help you out:

Step 1: Obviously, Remove all rotting foods and beverages. When finding a piece of food or beverage with a lot of fruit flies on it, get a grocery bag and trap the buggers into the bag as you place it over the item. This will trap them in there and prevent them from getting away and making more ‘babies’.

Step 2:  Clean the surfaces of your house. Although the food may be gone, there may be liquids still on your kitchen table or counter that may have fruit fly eggs in them or might attract surviving flies.

Step 3: Bleach your drain. Although I have read this doesn’t work, and I’ve never seen any results from this, it can’t hurt, so might as well take the 30 seconds and do it.

Step 4:  Dehumidify your house if necessary. If your house is extremely humid, get a dehumidifier and work some magic. This will help prevent the flies from reentering your house. This can even be done during or before Steps 1 and 2. Moisture in the air accelerates the fermentation process and therefore makes the buffet faster for the fruit flies.

Step 5: Buy some Venus Flytraps. These are some pretty cool plants anyways. In case you weren’t aware, these plants are carnivorous and as such, eat flies! Cool eh. So buy a few of these and put them where you often see fruit flies. Make sure the plant stays moist as this will actually attract the fruit flies for their inevitable doom. As an added bonus, when fruit flies are in danger, they release an odour so that other fruit flies know of danger. This odour is actually carbon dioxide. Luckily, since plants inhale carbon dioxide, the odour released by a fruit fly being consumed by a Venus Flytrap won’t do much good.

Step 6: Make homemade traps. The two best types of traps are wine and fruit. I find the wine works a bit better, but others say the fruit traps work better.

Here’s what you do:

  • Get a jar, plastic bottle or cup and remove the top.
  • Put the bait, either the wine or fruit (bananas work best) at the bottom of the object
  • Make packing tape (or other really sticky light tape) rolls and stick them to the inside of the object. This is my own added touch. This way, if fruit flies do take the bait, they will either drown or get stuck to this tape inside and die. Muahaha!
  • Place plastic wrap or similar material over the top of the jar, bottle or cup. Make sure it is tight. Tape around it on the sides.
  • The plastic wrap should be tight on top and should be completely taped with no openings around the sides.
  • With a toothpick or with one blade of thin blades scissors, poke holes into the top. These shouldn’t be big and there shouldn’t be that many of them. Spaces these holes about 1cm away from each other.
  • Place these traps in a corner somewhere near where there have been fruit flies, but away from common places where there will be a lot of movement.
  • Play the waiting game.
  • Every few days, cover these with grocery bags, grab them, tie the bag, and dispose of them.

Step 7: Light candles, incense, or smoke in your house. I cannot prove this idea, but it randomly came to me. I was trying to figure out why one of my roommates had no fruit flies in his room whereas I had tens of them. Then it occurred to me: he smokes in his room. As I had mentioned earlier in this article, fruit flies do not like CO2, and CO2 is exhausted when smoking. Thus, I hypothesized that the CO2 from smoking scared off the fruit flies. Thus, I lit candles next to my bed, and since then, I haven’t had a single fruit fly come to my bed (although they are still in my room, just no longer flying my way). Obviously two candles will not produce the same amount of CO2 as frequently smoking, hence the reason why the flies still exist in my room. It is interesting to note that I have no sugar or food in my room, and yet my roommate has numerous sources of such.

Step 8: Don’t leave more old foods or beverages around!

Do more than just read, protect yourself from fruit flies.

Author

Alex Dorward

student

Discussion

  • Ashley Williams

    This artcile made me laugh out loud at the library, sooo true, and super cute. You have got all these types of ladies figured out. I have also been convinced to check out this clothing line that sounds so fabulous! Great article Ash!

  • Kolanko

    Gunna win that bag!

  • Jordan

    hahaha Keep it up Dorward!

  • Kailee

    Great work once again Ash! I actually might take you up on reposting this to a certain someone just to drop some subtle hints :)

  • Scott

    This is a Sassy article

  • Ralph

    Now I know where to go and what to do… to survive V-Day without complications! Thanks for this wonderful article.

  • Johanna G

    Me and my hubby are the overworked type, ie serial entrepreneurs, in fact the scavenger hunt spa day, was how he proposed…we’re not overly valentinesy, but as i am super pregnant, friday will be a day at the spa! and he’ll have a one kind gift for the big v-day

  • Val

    Agree…Turbine is bomb for any lady!!!

  • Tammy

    Lol, I’m totally into the sporting event!

  • Erica

    “promises you don’t intend to keep”. bahaha.

  • Alex Todd

    I like the idea of giving a gift of spa for two… Getting myself a gift at the same time as getting someone else a gift is perfect.

    • http://alexdorward.com Alex Dorward

      I’d rather not give or receive a gift personally.

  • Stephanie

    again with the “promises you don’t intend to keep”. Not that I am a romantic but I don’t necessarily agree with the description of the romantic girl!! You can be romantic and not write your name with his last name everywhere! But otherwise, hilarious and so such a cute article. Dinner and a night in, please! :)

  • Dawn E.

    I agree with the diva comment…I would love for my man to show up with an upside down dress from Turbine! Or a gift-cert from Turbine so I can go pick out their new Mineral make-up! Then I would be saying lucky me…Happy Valentine’s day :) LOVE the heart clutch!!!

  • Kelly

    Loved the article almost as much as I love Lisa Drader-Murphy and Turbine!

    Although I think the sentiment of Valentine’s Day is sweet, I really believe romance should start in the morning and end in the evening every day! My special Valentine has my coffee ready each morning before my alarm goes off and has for 2+ years. It is this kind of thoughtfulness that I cherish every day of the year. That being said … if he wanted to rush down to Turbine and buy me an Obi Belt for Valentine’s Day I certainly wouldn’t complain 😉 Does this make me the practical type …. hmmmmm

  • Naomi

    Well, I am definitely a Diva that owns several Turbine pieces. I love Lisa’s relaxed hip style, and the beautiful fabrics she finds to work with. I’m a huge fan! I want that Clutch!
    Good Luck to all!!

  • http://twitter.com/mattbitter Matt Bitter

    +1 cool article

    I hope you are using a random number generator to pick zee winner

  • Mary

    Love Turbine so much, they help rid me of my blues while making me feel oh so beautiful all year round. Lisa is an amazing role model.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=508081401 Paige McCormick

    Haha! What a cute article!

    Love the clutch, Lisa!

  • Debby

    Love the article.Reading this I’m a romantic diva.Fortunately my husband realizes this and treats me like a queen.I’m one of the lucky ones who gets treated like it’s Valentine’s all year round…

  • TPEH

    I like the clutch! very cute! I hope I win!

    • Cindy Gorman

      That was a very well written article and funny, too. I enjoyed it, and I LOVE the clutch.

  • Maria

    Ashley! This article is super fun and it definitely gave me a few laughs about the traditions of V-Day and it also is making me excited for the special day! Maybe I’ll take the opportunity while I’m in France and go to Paris for the holiday! <3 xox

  • Eileen

    Great article, Ashley!! Would love, love, love one of Lisa’s fabulous clutch purses! :)

  • Sonya

    Im a lady of romance, practical Patty, and the GND (GIRL next door) who loves the Turbine designs from Nova Scotia, and when V Day arrives, the ambiance continues day to day, loving work, family, travel, and being pampered…Nothing shows the pampered side to this gal like carrying a Turbine design ALL the TIME.!!!!!!!!Love it

  • Kathryn

    very cute article Ashley! Happy Valentines Day everyone :)
    ps. love the clutch!

  • Ian Sabiston

    Dreams

  • Tony

    Great article!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=510389120 Brent Woodworth

    no im going to win

  • Wendy MacLean

    A girl with confidence can appreciate all aspects of this article. A lot of times this Valentine things is a hit or miss with our men, at least after reading Miss Kowalewski’s artcle he won’t have any excuses that he didn’t know what to buy me. I will take anything from Canadian designer Lisa Drader-Murphy, she truly is talented in every sense of the word.
    Thanks for the great read,
    Mrs. MacLean

  • krissy arbuckle

    for once i actually feel like i fit into a category 😉
    cute.

  • http://www.jaymcneil.ca Jay McNeil

    I’m not even a big chocolate fan.

  • Marcia

    awww I love Valentine’s Day!

  • Beth

    Nice Article!

  • http://www.edmundogurza.info Edmundo

    Great article guys!

  • ForeverAlone

    Oh no, no sweety on VDay. ForeverAlone.jpg

    Good article

  • http://pauletteupshall.ca Paulette

    I’d love to win that clutch – please enter me in draw!!

  • Alison

    fun article!

  • Trudy

    Great article! I found myself in three of the subtypes.
    Women are SOOOO complex! After having a couple of
    Valentines Day horror stories from my first marriage, I am
    thrilled to say that this time around we dig what really counts
    on Feb 14. Just living, loving and enjoying doing life together.
    It’s the every day small things that say “I love you!”

    • Kels

      hahaha I was thinking the same thing! I can’t quite decide where I fit in.

  • http://Bobbie.McGregor@facebook.com Bobbie McGregor

    Fantastic article….now we need a break-down for what to do for the men in our lives on Valentine’s Day!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=507638353 Stacy Podetz

    Great article Ash! Very fun! I wanna win! haha

  • http://www.facebook.com/shurden Jesse Shurden

    cool bag!

  • Kels

    awesome article… huge fan of lisa’s stuff, and of the written piece! however it did re-ignite my *idonthaveavalentine* pain 😉