The term “gnats” is often used to describe very small flying insects. Gnats are usually found outside, though. What you might be seeing in your house – especially your kitchen – are fruit flies, which are a little bit smaller than gnats. Adults are only about 1/8” long and usually have red eyes. The front part of the fruit fly is tan or brown and the rear part is black.
Fruit flies are attracted to over-ripe fruits and vegetables, but they also will breed in sink drains, garbage disposals, empty bottles and cans, trash and recycling containers, and even mops. Female fruit flies can lay around 500 eggs during their short life, which is typically about a month and a half. Since fruit flies lay their eggs near or in rotting foods, the best way to avoid having fruit flies is to eliminate the things they are attracted to.
How to Get Rid of Fruit Flies
Fruits and vegetables that have ripened should be eaten, refrigerated, or thrown away. A single forgotten rotting potato or onion can breed thousands of fruit flies. Keep trash cans and recycling bins clean. If your containers still have food or liquid in them after you’ve emptied them, scrub them with a disinfectant cleaner and rinse well.
If you still have fruit flies even after getting rid of the foods that attracted these pests in the first place and cleaning your waste bins, you can try a couple more things:
- Trapping fruit flies in a container that has apple cider vinegar can work. Just put some of the vinegar into a container and cover it with plastic wrap. Poke a hole or two into the wrap so the fruit flies can get in, but can’t get out.
- Putting a couple of drops of dish soap into a small bowl of vinegar will attract the fruit flies, where they end up drowning.
Bug & Weed Mart sells safe and effective products that can get rid of fruit flies, as well as mosquitoes and flies. We can also help you figure out if the pests that are bugging you are fruit flies or some other insect. Stop in at one of our five Valley wide locations and we’ll help you learn how to get rid of fruit flies.