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Invasion of the house flies!

snowballsnowball 2719 replies245 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
I have lots of flies on my main level of my townhome, and they are driving me crazy. I have been killing them individually by spraying with Windex (like in Big Fat Greek Wedding!) It is our thought that at some point a fly or flies laid eggs inside and they have now hatched; I do not believe they are coming in from the outside at this time. I did go around the outside of the windows and doors with fly spray, but didn't want to spray inside as my grandchildren will be in town this weekend and one of them touches everything.

I have order the stick on strips for the windows as someone recommended those. Looking for other suggestions. It is funny as I haven't found a fly on the other two levels of the house. The dog is terrified of them, so he is hiding in my bedroom and won't eat until the evening when the flies seem to go somewhere else.

Help me get rid of these flies!
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Replies to: Invasion of the house flies!

  • VeryHappyVeryHappy 18518 replies324 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Is there something dead inside a wall? That would be icky, but at least you'd know the source.
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  • somemomsomemom 10856 replies324 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    I cannot help you, but joining in the flying insect complaints, my PNW area is inundated with fruit flies. It's driving every one crazy!
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  • snowballsnowball 2719 replies245 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    No dead animal that we are aware of as there is no odor. The only place that we haven't checked was the attic, and that is on my husband's list tomorrow when he is back in town. As this is a center townhome, there is limited entry for varmints; that is not to say one could not get in.

    With the number we have, I truly believe they were born inside, especially since they are all hanging around the main level windows. They like the sun and aren't really near the food source; mostly on the windows and coffee table. Yesterday I killed about 20; today's count is only 2, so maybe I am making progress! I never see more than 3 at a time, so at first assumed we only had 3 until I would spray them and then find more! No wonder the dog was so freaked out!
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  • cshell2cshell2 556 replies7 threadsRegistered User Member
    I'm in MN and this is the time of the year when the Cluster flies start showing up. Around late August they find whatever tiny cracks they can on the outside of the building (usually the west side) to get in the walls to wait out the winter, and somehow they find their way in. So far this year I got nothing, which is awesome, but some years in the Fall I'm vaccuuming up dozens in one day. I'll clear them all out, then the next day I'll come home from work and there's a ton again. They are slow and sluggish and usually all in one room of our house near a window.
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  • doschicosdoschicos 21132 replies219 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    @somemom For fruit flies, do you know the sopay, vinegary water tricK?
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  • snowballsnowball 2719 replies245 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    @cshell2 I was reading about cluster flies this morning so decided to try to get a picture so I could figure out which it was. I still am not sure, as the one I sprayed looks different from the one I got a picture of on the sun lite window! Looks like the live one is a cluster fly and I think they are slower flying.

    My windows are east and west facing, and they definitely hang individually on the window closest to the sun, but they also like my coffee table 😡. I am not seeing as many today, so maybe making progress? I will have my husband spray the attic tomorrow.
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  • 3scoutsmom3scoutsmom 5524 replies337 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Sometimes they can breed in the sink traps, you could try covering all the drains when not in use and see if that helps. Also leave out a glass or two of red wine, fruit flies love it and at least they die happy;-)
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  • cshell2cshell2 556 replies7 threadsRegistered User Member
    @snowball - I don't have any advice for what to do for them. I'm told you're supposed to call an exterminator to spray the west side of the house in August before they get into the walls but I never think of it until I'm finding flies in the house and by that time it's too late. If it's any consolation, even in the worst years it was just a few weeks of dealing with them and then they were mostly gone. Some years they never show up, some years are awful.
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  • mathmommathmom 32378 replies159 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    My guess is that you have cluster flies. It's happened to us a few times and it's pretty horrible, but shortlived. You can get sticky fly strips at the grocery or hardware store and should be able to hang them somewhere out of reach of prying hands.
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  • somemomsomemom 10856 replies324 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    We, and our friends and neighbors, all have multiple wine/vinegar etc. traps out, catching lots, but there are lots more. Put down a glass of wine or put fruit in a bowl and you have a literal swarm. So gross.
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  • yucca10yucca10 1261 replies37 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    edited September 22
    For fruit flies, traps work but only if you don't leave any fruit out. Keep fruit in the fridge or in tightly closed containers, and put all food waste in the freezer until trash pick up day.
    edited September 22
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  • SybyllaSybylla 3818 replies48 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    And vacuum fruit flies, needs patience but so rewarding
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  • snowballsnowball 2719 replies245 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    edited September 22
    I think I have read enough articles on the difference between house flies and cluster flies that I could write a middle school paper :wink: My flies seem to have characteristics of both, so I have learned nothing! They do see slower in flight, which would suggest cluster, but they don't hang around in a cluster. At rest (does that also include death) their wings are separate, which suggest house fly. As far as their color, I can't tell if they have the black stripe of a house fly, or checkerboard of the cluster fly; even with a magnifying glass I can not tell.

    So...I am going to say I have flies; less today than yesterday. Oh, and I did ask one of my neighbors, and he has not had any issue with flies, so they seem to like my place better!
    edited September 22
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  • Cof22momCof22mom 64 replies3 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    For the flies — they hate lavender. I sprayed my sliding doors and window sills with essential oil & water and worked like a charm! Seems to be a seasonal problem, get them at the end of summer.

    Fruit flies — a little wine (or wine vinegar) in a jar with a sheet of paper twisted into a simple cone. They fly in to the wine and can’t get out.

    Good luck!
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  • cshell2cshell2 556 replies7 threadsRegistered User Member
    Cluster flies don't really cluster once they're in your house. They get the name from how they pack themselves into places like windowsills and walls and such for the winter. Inside, they're sluggish and often die for some reason before I even get to them. I can usually just vacuum them up they're so slow.
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  • MIMommaMIMomma 98 replies36 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    We've had a problem like this a couple of times over the last few years. Drove me crazy!
    In our situation, we noticed that my husband put all the backyard dog waste in a receptacle near an outside window, and flies swarmed around there. We guessed they were getting into the house near that area, through a masonry crack or something. When DH started using a different waste container and moved it to another area of our yard, the fly problem in the house diminished.
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  • kiddiekiddie 3409 replies216 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    I just had this happen to us. We had a bunch of flies in the basement after coming back from a vacation (the big ones not fruit flies). I killed maybe a dozen and sort of forgot about it. They returned with a vengeance 2-3 weeks later. I killed dozens in one day. They were concentrated in the lowest levels of my house and flying from window to window in one level and a bright light in another. It was like a scary movie, so I called an exterminator. They agreed there was nothing dead anywhere attracting them and called them bottle flies (I had also assumed they were cluster flies). I paid a few hundred dollars for them to spray something effective but expensive called fly spot. They put it on walls and windows in the rooms where I had flies and also around some of the perimeter openings (doors & windows). I paid for 60 days of follow up as part of the treatment. They said that the flies lay their eggs and I would most likely see a few the next round (2-3 weeks again). The next round would be attracted to the fly spot and die and not lay another generation of eggs. I saw one dead one right after the treatment and haven't seen one, dead or alive, since. I was told the fly spot is safe for people and animals. You can get it on Amazon (beware it is expensive.)
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  • MaineLonghornMaineLonghorn 38435 replies2105 threadsSuper Moderator Super Moderator
    edited September 23
    We've had pantry moths for several years now. I think they come in with the bird food (wild as well as cockatiel). They are HORRIBLE. Before they're moths, they're maggots! It's very embarrassing to have maggots on your ceiling. We cleaned the pantries thoroughly, put out moth traps, etc. The problem seems better, finally. We still have a few moths flying around, but I haven't seen maggots in months. Maybe I should call an exterminator, though.
    edited September 23
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  • NJWrestlingmomNJWrestlingmom 1228 replies2 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Our area is now under a massive Lanternfly invasion. Hoping I don't lose all the trees we've planted over the last 16 years!!!
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  • MassmommMassmomm 3925 replies81 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    @MaineLonghorn we had horrible pantry moths several years ago. They don't just love grains. They also come in on chocolate and chili peppers. I now no longer buy from the bulk section at the supermarket. You can still get them from pre packaged products, but it is less likely. I had to throw out all of my grains, cereals, chocolate, and dried chilis and start completely over after washing my pantry and shelves with bleach.
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