Don’t ya just hate fruit flies?

Editor’s note: This article is from the archives of the MSU Crop Advisory Team Alerts. Check the label of any pesticide referenced to ensure your use is included.

Fall is also the time of the year for fruit flies, those tiny little guys with the bright red eyes. Flies of all kinds peak in numbers during late summer because there is lots of decaying fruit and other organic material out there this time of year. This is especially true for anyone with a vegetable garden or backyard orchard. Fruit flies love fermenting fruits and are attracted to any sweet liquid be it fruit or vegetable juice, soda and beer left in the bottom of the can, or something thrown into the garbage can. Fruit flies are small enough to pass through window screens so it is difficult to keep them out of the house. They are very irritating to gardeners who want to display their hard earned produced on the kitchen table. If you put a bowl of tomatoes or fruit out this time of year, it will likely have a swarm of these tiny little pests around it in a matter of minutes. Many callers claim they appear out of nowhere. There is no easy solution to fruit flies other than don’t keep anything out that might attract them and emptying the kitchen garbage pail more frequently. A little spray of a household aerosol insecticide will also help keep their numbers down.

Fruit fly
I took this picture of a fruit fly in my  office
this morning.  We’ve had a bit of a problem
with them over the past few days. Some of
my office mates blame me.  Something about
a forgotten sample of green peppers,  which
was in an active stage of decay when they
were discovered.

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