Fruit Fly Identification
Wild fruit flies have brick red eyes, are yellow-brown in colour, and have transverse black rings across their abdomen. They exhibit sexual dimorphism: females are about 2.5 mm long; males are slightly smaller and the back of their bodies is darker.
Males are easily distinguished from females based on colour differences, with a distinct black patch at the abdomen, less noticeable in recently emerged flies. Furthermore, males have a cluster of spiky hairs surrounding the reproducing parts used to attach to the female during mating.
Fruit Fly Habitat
Fruit flies are commonly encountered in association with fermenting waste material, especially fruit and vegetable matter. They are also common in areas where soft drinks, alcohol, beer, ice cream and fermenting flour are found. Garbage and recycling bins are ideal locations to breed. Newly developed adults are attracted to light.
Fruit Fly Life Cycle
The lifespan of a fruit fly is about 30 days at 29 °C (84 °F). The developmental period for most fruit flies varies with temperature. The shortest development time is 7 days. Development times increase at higher temperatures, about 11 days, due to heat stress.
Under crowded conditions, development time increases, while the emerging flies are smaller. Females lay about 400 eggs, about five at a time, into rotting fruit or other suitable material such as the surface of fermenting fruit or vegetables or where moisture and yeast are abundant. The eggs, are about 0.5 mm long take only 15 to 30 hours to hatch.
Fruit Fly Prevention
Fruit fly problems can only be solved through investigating breeding sites and corrective sanitary measures. Installation of traps containing fly attractant will reduce adult populations.
Preparation Steps for Fruit Fly Treatment
1. Since fruit flies develop in wet decaying debris, all areas where this type of material is found should be eliminated i.e. garbage pails should be emptied often.
2. Treatment performed by Abell Pest Control will vary depending on the type of fly. An inspection and report detailing breeding sites will be performed. Recommended sanitation must be performed prior to any treatment. Fly traps may be used, in this case any trap should be left where the technician places them - Please do not disturb. Outside a treatment around window sills and eaves may take place.
3. Screen or seal all openings to the outside.
4. It may be necessary to vacate the premises during service and not re-enter until at least 4 hours after treatment. Persons with underlying health conditions should consult their family physician where they have concerns regarding re-entry. Open windows for 20 to 30 minutes after re-entry is possible.