- Color: dull yellow-brown to dark brown; some species have distinctive red eyes.
- Size: adults – 1/8 inch long; larvae (maggots) – 1/10 to 1/5 inch long.
Habits of Fruit Flies:
- Eggs are laid onto the surface of fermenting fruit or vegetables or on areas on which moisture and yeast are abundant.
- Females produce up to 500 eggs.
- Larvae complete development within five to six days and crawl to drier areas of the food or elsewhere to pupate.
- Developmental time (adult to adult): eight to ten days.
- Recently emerged adults are attracted to light.
Damage Caused by Fruit Flies:
- Can contaminate food with microorganisms.
- Over-ripe fruits or other foods, fermenting liquid in the bottom of garbage cans, dirty recycling materials, clogged garbage disposal, dirty mop, etc.
- Increased problems with this pest fly in recycling bins and their contents.
How to Control and Kill Fruit Flies:
- Locate and eliminate the breeding material. Complete and thorough sanitation is necessary to eliminate the source of the infestation.
- Insect light traps and baited jar traps fitted with tops which permit fly entry and prevent escape are effective in reducing the population but are no substitute for sanitation.
- To eliminate small numbers of adult flies, a vacuum cleaner or an aerosol insecticide should be used.