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Filth-Breeding Flies and What You Need To Know
Several kinds of non-biting flies can be found in and around farms, residences, and food-handling
establishments. These flies can be harmful to health, causing annoyance and discomfort. All filth flies
have an egg, larva (maggot), pupa, and adult stage in their life cycle. The adult fly has 2 wings (the hind
pair is reduced to a knobbed balancing organ).
Filth flies are usually scavengers in nature and many are capable of transmitting diseases to man. Filth
flies can usually be grouped according to their habits and appearance as: houseflies and their relatives;
flesh flies, blow flies and bottle flies, filter flies, soldier flies, and vinegar (fruit) flies.
House Fly
The house fly, Musca domestica is one of the most common of all insects. It is
worldwide in distribution and is a pest in homes, barns, poultry houses, food
processing plants, dairies, and recreation areas. It has a tremendous breeding
potential and during the warmer months can produce a generation in less than
two weeks.
House fly eggs are laid in almost any type of warm organic material. Animal or poultry manure is an
excellent breeding medium. Fermenting vegetation such as grass clippings and garbage can also
provide a medium for fly breeding. The whitish eggs, which are laid in clusters of 75-100,
Stable Flies
The stable fly is a blood-sucking fly which is of considerable importance to
people, pets, agricultural animals. Stable Flies primarily attack animals for a
blood meal, but in the absence of an animal host will also bite man.
Adult stable flies can fly up to 70 miles from their breeding sites. The stable fly
adult is similar to the house fly in size and color. The stable fly, however, has a
long bayonet-like mouthpart for sucking blood. Unlike many other species of
flies, both male and female stable flies suck blood.
The most practical and economical method for reducing stable fly populations is the elimination or proper
management of breeding sources. It is important to remember that stable flies cannot develop in dry materials.
Stable flies breed in three principal types of material:
* Green vegetation (e.g. green chop, silage, crop residues, and cut grass),
* Seaweed and Bay grass deposits and
* Animal manure.
Flesh Flies
Flesh flies are a scavenger fly species that usually feeds on carrion or meat scraps in
garbage. They are medium- to large-sized flies and usually have 3 dark thoracic
stripes and mottled abdomens. Many of the common species have a red tip on the
abdomen.
Flesh flies retain their eggs within the body of the female until they are ready to hatch.
The larvae are deposited directly onto the food the immature will be eating. The life cycle for the common
species can be completed in 8 to 21 days.
The preferred breeding media around residences are decayed flesh, spoiling meat, and manure. Usually
garbage can meat scraps and dog food left outside are abundant sources of flesh fly breeding. Flesh flies can
breed in dead rodents and birds in attics or wall voids of houses.
Blow Flies and Bottle Flies
There are quite a few species of blow flies and bottle flies which are found in and around residences. The
greenbottle, bluebottle, and bronze bottle flies are particularly abundant. In urban areas these flies may be
more abundant than house flies.
The blow flies and bottle flies usually have
a metallic blue or green color or both on
the thorax and abdomen. These flies are
strong fliers and range many miles from
breeding places. They are abundant during
the warm summer months.
Blow flies and bottle flies can breed on dead rodents and birds in attics or wall voids of houses. They usually
breed in meat scraps, animal excrement, and decaying animal matter around houses. The adult flies are quite
active inside and are strongly attracted to light. The mature larvae are often a problem when they migrate from
breeding areas to pupate.
Blow flies usually lay eggs on dead animals or decaying meat. Garbage cans have been known to produce
30,000 blow flies in one week. The life cycle usually lasts 9-21 days from egg to adult.
Filter Flies
Filter flies (drain flies), belong to the family of flies called moth flies. Filter
flies usually feed on slime in trickling filters of sewage treatment plants or
in drains of sinks. Usually filter flies breed in houses in the bathroom or
kitchen area. Adult filter flies have the body and wings covered with dense,
long hairs. The eggs of filter flies are laid where moist decaying organic
matter occurs (water traps in plumbing fixtures, dirty garbage containers,
and around built-in sinks). Larvae and pupae live in the decomposing film.
The life cycle from egg to adult is usually 1-3 weeks.
Filter flies can be controlled by locating and correcting the source of moisture. Timed aerosol space treatments
with pyrethrins can break the life cycle of filter flies.
Soldier Flies
The soldier fly is a widespread pest which occasionally becomes a problem
in homes. The adult is a large fly about 1 inch long with 2 large translucent
areas on the abdomen. The fly behaves like a wasp and is similar in
appearance to a mud-dauber wasp. The larvae prefer to feed on human or
animal excrement although they have also been known to breed in honey
bee colonies killed in walls of houses.
Most frequently the larvae are found in bathrooms migrating from the septic
tank or sewer line. The presence of the maggot under such circumstances
indicates the septic tank or sewage line is not working properly.
Fruit Flies
Fruit flies are nuisance pests and contaminators of food. Fruit flies usually breed in fruit, dirty garbage
containers, or slime in drains. Each adult lays about 500 eggs which hatch and the larvae mature to adults in 9-
12 days. These flies are readily attracted to fruit, vegetables, and soda bottles and cans.
Eye gnats are small flies, shiny black about 1/6 inch in length. The adults are
strongly attracted to moisture around the eyes and nose of people outdoors.
In mid-summer large numbers of eye gnats persistently hover around the
face causing considerable annoyance. Often eye gnats enter the homes
through open doors or windows. They are strongly attracted to light and
observed mainly on windows in large numbers.
They are noticed on vegetation and animal excrement. The life cycle varies
from 7-28 days depending on the temperature and moisture.
Control of eye gnats is difficult. It is often hard to destroy breeding sites over the many acres of land where eye
gnats breed. For personal protection outdoors repellents may be applied to the skin. Indoors, space sprays will
kill adults which are trapped in the house.
Hump-Backed Flies
Hump-backed flies are about 1/8 inch long with a small head and
large thorax, causing the fly to have a hump-backed appearance.
Hump-backed flies breed in decaying vegetation, animal debris,
garbage and in ant and termite nests.
Non-chemical control can be obtained by sanitation, destruction of
breeding sites and moisture control. Hump-backed flies may be
chemically controlled by residual and space sprays.
Secondary Screwworm Flies
Secondary screwworm flies are about 1/4 inch long, green in color,
shiny abdomen and thorax with thorax marked lengthwise with
three dark stripes. Their life cycle is 9 to 39 days. They breed in
dead tissue surrounding wounds in animals, fresh cut meats, and
garbage. Secondary screwworm flies can be chemically controlled
by sanitation and destruction of breeding sites. Chemical control
may be obtained by residual and space sprays.
Control of Filth Flies
Regardless of advancements in chemical control, sanitation is still
the best method of controlling filth flies in and around the home and
on the farm. Flies seek breeding places where garbage, animal
droppings or vegetation residues accumulate. Locate and thoroughly clean such places. Dry, spread or
somehow dispose of dog, cat, or other animal excrement. Do not let garbage accumulate in the open and
make sure garbage cans have sound bottoms and tight fitting lids.
Good fitting screens on windows and doors are essential in barring flies from homes, dairy barns, milk rooms,
and food processing areas. To kill flies inside the home use a space spray or aerosol containing pyrethrins plus
a synergist. Release the mist from the aerosol for a few seconds around the room and keep the room closed
for 10 to 15 minutes. Outside the house apply a residual or surface spray. Follow dosage and application
directions on the container label.
To kill flies in and around farm buildings apply a residual spray, an insecticide bait, or a larvicide to the
breeding areas.
Descriptions of filth-breeding flies.
Pests Description
Control
Breeding Habits
Life
Cycl
e
Non-Chemical Chemical
House Fly
About 1/4" in length; dull
gray in color; thorax
marked longitudinally
with 4 dark stripes;
abdomen pale and fourth
wing vein is angled.
Warm organic material
such as animal and
poultry manure, garbage,
decaying vegetables and
fruits and in piles of moist
leaves and lawn
clippings.
6 to 10
days
Sanitation and
destruction of
breeding sites; tight
fitting garbage
containers and
screens on
windows and doors.
Larvicides;
residual and
space sprays;
baits.
Green
Bottle Fly
About 1/2" in length with
shiny metallic blue-green
abdomen and thorax.
Dead animal carcasses;
decomposing meat and
fish; garbage and some-
times animal excrement.
9 to 21
days
Sanitation and
destruction of
breeding sites; tight
fitting garbage
containers and
screens on
windows and doors.
Larvicides;
residual and
space sprays.
Bronze
Bottle Fly
About 1/2" in length with
a shiny bronze abdomen
and thorax.
Dead animal carcasses;
decomposing meat and
fish, garbage and some-
times animal excrement.
9 to 10
days
Sanitation and
destruction of
breeding sites; tight
fitting garbage
containers.
Larvicides;
residual and
space sprays.
Blue Bottle
Fly About 1/2" in length with
a dull thorax and shiny
blue abdomen.
Dead animal carcasses;
decomposing meat and
fish, garbage, over-ripe
fruit, decaying vegetable
matter and sores on
living humans.
15 to
20 days
Sanitation and
destruction of
breeding sites; tight
fitting garbage
containers and
screens on
windows and doors.
Larvicides;
residual and
space sprays.
Moth Flies 1/16" to 1/8" in length;
light gray to tan in color.
Decomposing organic
material such as moist
plant litter, garbage,
sewage, around kitchen
or bathroom sinks and
water traps in plumbing
fixtures.
7 to 20
days
Sanitation and
destruction of
breeding sites, tight
fitting garbage
containers and
moisture control.
Larvicides;
residual and
space sprays.
Eye Gnats
About 1/16" in length,
shiny black to dull gray in
color with yellow or
orange markings on the
legs and have small
mouthparts and bare
aristae on antennae.
Loose soil containing
con-siderable organic
material, decaying
vegetation and animal
excrement.
7 to 28
days
Sanitation and
destruction of
breeding sites.
Repellents;
residual and
space sprays.
Photos courtesy of photographers published on Bugwood.org ITP Node
Hump-
backed
Flies
About 1/8" in length with
a small head and large
thorax causing the fly to
have a hump-backed
appearance.
Decaying vegetation,
animal debris, garbage
and in ant and termite
nests.
10 to
25 days
Sanitation,
destruction of
breeding sites and
moisture control.
Residual and
space sprays.
Blind
Mosquitoes
3/16" to 1/2" in length
with a slender body, large
thorax, small head, and
slender 5 to 14
segmented antennae.
Lakes, ponds, rivers,
streams, reservoirs and
tanks.
8 to 21
days
Moisture Control
No Suitable
Control.
Black Blow
Flies
About 1/3" in length with
a shiny metallic dark blue
abdomen and thorax.
Dead animal carcasses;
garbage and wounds in
living animals.
8 to 10
days
Sanitation and
destruction of
breeding sites; tight
fitting garbage
containers.
Larvicides;
residual and
space sprays.
Flesh Flies
3/8" to 9/16" in length,
dull grayish-black in color
with three dark stripes on
the thorax.
Decayed flesh and
spoiling meat, manure,
wounds in living animals
and sometimes garbage.
8 to 21
days Sanitation and
destruction of
breeding sites.
Residual and
space sprays.
Vinegar
Flies
About 1/8" in length,
brownish-black to
brownish-yellow in color
and have a feathery
bristle on the antennae.
Fermenting or rotting fruit
and vegetable material
and in garbage cans.
Sanitation and
destruction of
breeding sites; tight
fitting garbage
containers.
Residual and
space sprays.
Dump Flies
About 1/4" long, black in
color with a shiny thorax
and abdomen.
Garbage and fowl excre-
ment. The larvae are
predaceous on larvae of
other flies.
Sanitation and
destruction of
breeding sites.
Larvicides;
residual and
space sprays.
Secondary
Screwworm
Flies
About 1/4" long, green in
color, shiny abdomen
and thorax with thorax
marked lengthwise with 3
dark stripes.
Dead tissue surrounding
wounds in animals, fresh
cut meats, and garbage.
9 to 39
days
Sanitation and
destruction of
breeding sites.
Residual and
space sprays.

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Course Filth-Breeding Flies and What You Need To Know.pptx

  • 1. Filth-Breeding Flies and What You Need To Know Several kinds of non-biting flies can be found in and around farms, residences, and food-handling establishments. These flies can be harmful to health, causing annoyance and discomfort. All filth flies have an egg, larva (maggot), pupa, and adult stage in their life cycle. The adult fly has 2 wings (the hind pair is reduced to a knobbed balancing organ). Filth flies are usually scavengers in nature and many are capable of transmitting diseases to man. Filth flies can usually be grouped according to their habits and appearance as: houseflies and their relatives; flesh flies, blow flies and bottle flies, filter flies, soldier flies, and vinegar (fruit) flies. House Fly The house fly, Musca domestica is one of the most common of all insects. It is worldwide in distribution and is a pest in homes, barns, poultry houses, food processing plants, dairies, and recreation areas. It has a tremendous breeding potential and during the warmer months can produce a generation in less than two weeks. House fly eggs are laid in almost any type of warm organic material. Animal or poultry manure is an excellent breeding medium. Fermenting vegetation such as grass clippings and garbage can also provide a medium for fly breeding. The whitish eggs, which are laid in clusters of 75-100, Stable Flies The stable fly is a blood-sucking fly which is of considerable importance to people, pets, agricultural animals. Stable Flies primarily attack animals for a blood meal, but in the absence of an animal host will also bite man. Adult stable flies can fly up to 70 miles from their breeding sites. The stable fly adult is similar to the house fly in size and color. The stable fly, however, has a long bayonet-like mouthpart for sucking blood. Unlike many other species of flies, both male and female stable flies suck blood. The most practical and economical method for reducing stable fly populations is the elimination or proper management of breeding sources. It is important to remember that stable flies cannot develop in dry materials. Stable flies breed in three principal types of material: * Green vegetation (e.g. green chop, silage, crop residues, and cut grass), * Seaweed and Bay grass deposits and * Animal manure. Flesh Flies Flesh flies are a scavenger fly species that usually feeds on carrion or meat scraps in garbage. They are medium- to large-sized flies and usually have 3 dark thoracic stripes and mottled abdomens. Many of the common species have a red tip on the abdomen. Flesh flies retain their eggs within the body of the female until they are ready to hatch. The larvae are deposited directly onto the food the immature will be eating. The life cycle for the common species can be completed in 8 to 21 days.
  • 2. The preferred breeding media around residences are decayed flesh, spoiling meat, and manure. Usually garbage can meat scraps and dog food left outside are abundant sources of flesh fly breeding. Flesh flies can breed in dead rodents and birds in attics or wall voids of houses. Blow Flies and Bottle Flies There are quite a few species of blow flies and bottle flies which are found in and around residences. The greenbottle, bluebottle, and bronze bottle flies are particularly abundant. In urban areas these flies may be more abundant than house flies. The blow flies and bottle flies usually have a metallic blue or green color or both on the thorax and abdomen. These flies are strong fliers and range many miles from breeding places. They are abundant during the warm summer months. Blow flies and bottle flies can breed on dead rodents and birds in attics or wall voids of houses. They usually breed in meat scraps, animal excrement, and decaying animal matter around houses. The adult flies are quite active inside and are strongly attracted to light. The mature larvae are often a problem when they migrate from breeding areas to pupate. Blow flies usually lay eggs on dead animals or decaying meat. Garbage cans have been known to produce 30,000 blow flies in one week. The life cycle usually lasts 9-21 days from egg to adult. Filter Flies Filter flies (drain flies), belong to the family of flies called moth flies. Filter flies usually feed on slime in trickling filters of sewage treatment plants or in drains of sinks. Usually filter flies breed in houses in the bathroom or kitchen area. Adult filter flies have the body and wings covered with dense, long hairs. The eggs of filter flies are laid where moist decaying organic matter occurs (water traps in plumbing fixtures, dirty garbage containers, and around built-in sinks). Larvae and pupae live in the decomposing film. The life cycle from egg to adult is usually 1-3 weeks. Filter flies can be controlled by locating and correcting the source of moisture. Timed aerosol space treatments with pyrethrins can break the life cycle of filter flies. Soldier Flies The soldier fly is a widespread pest which occasionally becomes a problem in homes. The adult is a large fly about 1 inch long with 2 large translucent areas on the abdomen. The fly behaves like a wasp and is similar in appearance to a mud-dauber wasp. The larvae prefer to feed on human or animal excrement although they have also been known to breed in honey bee colonies killed in walls of houses. Most frequently the larvae are found in bathrooms migrating from the septic tank or sewer line. The presence of the maggot under such circumstances indicates the septic tank or sewage line is not working properly.
  • 3. Fruit Flies Fruit flies are nuisance pests and contaminators of food. Fruit flies usually breed in fruit, dirty garbage containers, or slime in drains. Each adult lays about 500 eggs which hatch and the larvae mature to adults in 9- 12 days. These flies are readily attracted to fruit, vegetables, and soda bottles and cans. Eye gnats are small flies, shiny black about 1/6 inch in length. The adults are strongly attracted to moisture around the eyes and nose of people outdoors. In mid-summer large numbers of eye gnats persistently hover around the face causing considerable annoyance. Often eye gnats enter the homes through open doors or windows. They are strongly attracted to light and observed mainly on windows in large numbers. They are noticed on vegetation and animal excrement. The life cycle varies from 7-28 days depending on the temperature and moisture. Control of eye gnats is difficult. It is often hard to destroy breeding sites over the many acres of land where eye gnats breed. For personal protection outdoors repellents may be applied to the skin. Indoors, space sprays will kill adults which are trapped in the house. Hump-Backed Flies Hump-backed flies are about 1/8 inch long with a small head and large thorax, causing the fly to have a hump-backed appearance. Hump-backed flies breed in decaying vegetation, animal debris, garbage and in ant and termite nests. Non-chemical control can be obtained by sanitation, destruction of breeding sites and moisture control. Hump-backed flies may be chemically controlled by residual and space sprays. Secondary Screwworm Flies Secondary screwworm flies are about 1/4 inch long, green in color, shiny abdomen and thorax with thorax marked lengthwise with three dark stripes. Their life cycle is 9 to 39 days. They breed in dead tissue surrounding wounds in animals, fresh cut meats, and garbage. Secondary screwworm flies can be chemically controlled by sanitation and destruction of breeding sites. Chemical control may be obtained by residual and space sprays. Control of Filth Flies Regardless of advancements in chemical control, sanitation is still the best method of controlling filth flies in and around the home and on the farm. Flies seek breeding places where garbage, animal droppings or vegetation residues accumulate. Locate and thoroughly clean such places. Dry, spread or somehow dispose of dog, cat, or other animal excrement. Do not let garbage accumulate in the open and make sure garbage cans have sound bottoms and tight fitting lids. Good fitting screens on windows and doors are essential in barring flies from homes, dairy barns, milk rooms, and food processing areas. To kill flies inside the home use a space spray or aerosol containing pyrethrins plus a synergist. Release the mist from the aerosol for a few seconds around the room and keep the room closed for 10 to 15 minutes. Outside the house apply a residual or surface spray. Follow dosage and application directions on the container label. To kill flies in and around farm buildings apply a residual spray, an insecticide bait, or a larvicide to the breeding areas.
  • 4. Descriptions of filth-breeding flies. Pests Description Control Breeding Habits Life Cycl e Non-Chemical Chemical House Fly About 1/4" in length; dull gray in color; thorax marked longitudinally with 4 dark stripes; abdomen pale and fourth wing vein is angled. Warm organic material such as animal and poultry manure, garbage, decaying vegetables and fruits and in piles of moist leaves and lawn clippings. 6 to 10 days Sanitation and destruction of breeding sites; tight fitting garbage containers and screens on windows and doors. Larvicides; residual and space sprays; baits. Green Bottle Fly About 1/2" in length with shiny metallic blue-green abdomen and thorax. Dead animal carcasses; decomposing meat and fish; garbage and some- times animal excrement. 9 to 21 days Sanitation and destruction of breeding sites; tight fitting garbage containers and screens on windows and doors. Larvicides; residual and space sprays. Bronze Bottle Fly About 1/2" in length with a shiny bronze abdomen and thorax. Dead animal carcasses; decomposing meat and fish, garbage and some- times animal excrement. 9 to 10 days Sanitation and destruction of breeding sites; tight fitting garbage containers. Larvicides; residual and space sprays. Blue Bottle Fly About 1/2" in length with a dull thorax and shiny blue abdomen. Dead animal carcasses; decomposing meat and fish, garbage, over-ripe fruit, decaying vegetable matter and sores on living humans. 15 to 20 days Sanitation and destruction of breeding sites; tight fitting garbage containers and screens on windows and doors. Larvicides; residual and space sprays. Moth Flies 1/16" to 1/8" in length; light gray to tan in color. Decomposing organic material such as moist plant litter, garbage, sewage, around kitchen or bathroom sinks and water traps in plumbing fixtures. 7 to 20 days Sanitation and destruction of breeding sites, tight fitting garbage containers and moisture control. Larvicides; residual and space sprays. Eye Gnats About 1/16" in length, shiny black to dull gray in color with yellow or orange markings on the legs and have small mouthparts and bare aristae on antennae. Loose soil containing con-siderable organic material, decaying vegetation and animal excrement. 7 to 28 days Sanitation and destruction of breeding sites. Repellents; residual and space sprays.
  • 5. Photos courtesy of photographers published on Bugwood.org ITP Node Hump- backed Flies About 1/8" in length with a small head and large thorax causing the fly to have a hump-backed appearance. Decaying vegetation, animal debris, garbage and in ant and termite nests. 10 to 25 days Sanitation, destruction of breeding sites and moisture control. Residual and space sprays. Blind Mosquitoes 3/16" to 1/2" in length with a slender body, large thorax, small head, and slender 5 to 14 segmented antennae. Lakes, ponds, rivers, streams, reservoirs and tanks. 8 to 21 days Moisture Control No Suitable Control. Black Blow Flies About 1/3" in length with a shiny metallic dark blue abdomen and thorax. Dead animal carcasses; garbage and wounds in living animals. 8 to 10 days Sanitation and destruction of breeding sites; tight fitting garbage containers. Larvicides; residual and space sprays. Flesh Flies 3/8" to 9/16" in length, dull grayish-black in color with three dark stripes on the thorax. Decayed flesh and spoiling meat, manure, wounds in living animals and sometimes garbage. 8 to 21 days Sanitation and destruction of breeding sites. Residual and space sprays. Vinegar Flies About 1/8" in length, brownish-black to brownish-yellow in color and have a feathery bristle on the antennae. Fermenting or rotting fruit and vegetable material and in garbage cans. Sanitation and destruction of breeding sites; tight fitting garbage containers. Residual and space sprays. Dump Flies About 1/4" long, black in color with a shiny thorax and abdomen. Garbage and fowl excre- ment. The larvae are predaceous on larvae of other flies. Sanitation and destruction of breeding sites. Larvicides; residual and space sprays. Secondary Screwworm Flies About 1/4" long, green in color, shiny abdomen and thorax with thorax marked lengthwise with 3 dark stripes. Dead tissue surrounding wounds in animals, fresh cut meats, and garbage. 9 to 39 days Sanitation and destruction of breeding sites. Residual and space sprays.