Of all Diptera fly species in the world, fruit flies infest homes and buildings most often. Fruit flies belong to the Drosophila genus which includes at least 4,500 documented species. Of these species, D. melanogaster and D. repleta are the two species most commonly found within structures. The D. melanogaster species, also referred to as the “red eyed fruit fly” is found within homes more often than in restaurants and buildings. The D. repleta species, also known as the “dark eyed fruit fly,” is found in commercial buildings and restaurants more often than in homes. Fruit flies closely resemble common houseflies, only they are noticeably smaller at about one eighth of an inch in length. Red eyed and dark eyed fruit flies are nearly identical in appearance, but the dark eyed fruit fly is a bit larger.

Eradicating fruit fly infestations is a major challenge for pest control professionals. This is because fruit flies produce an extraordinarily large amount of eggs, as one single egg mass produces 500 new fruit fly adults. Fruit flies can be found anywhere where decaying organic matter exists, and fruit fly infestations often occur within homes and buildings where such matter is hidden away from the occupants. Decaying organic matter is specifically sought out by pest control professionals in homes that are infested with fruit flies.

When a pest controller visits a home that is infested with fruit flies, they look for all possible sources of decaying organic matter. In many cases, decaying organic matter may only exist in small amounts. For example, recycle or garbage bins that contain remnants of organic matter is enough to attract fruit flies to a property. In other cases, slightly decayed vegetables and fruits that are stored away attract the flies into a home. Organic matter that accumulates within drains and pipes also attract fruit flies, as do empty soda or beer cans. Even dirty mop heads or brooms that contain decaying organic matter can attract fruit flies. Simply removing these sources of decaying matter from a home is often enough to eliminate a fruit fly infestation.

Have you ever had fruit flies within your home before?