Massive fruit fly infestation

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Old 06-24-17, 01:53 AM
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Massive fruit fly infestation

I really think I have the biggest infestation of (what I think are) fruit flies there has ever. It started 2 nights ago with finding them all over my bed after my light above the bed had been left on. Then last night I kept the light off but my husband left my master bathroom light on and I found hundreds in my bathroom mostly around the sink. I cleaned up what I could and poured drain cleaner in the drains. I thought that had helped until today I noticed them all over the outside of my house, especially the walls around my garage. Then I opened my garage and found what must have been at the very least tens of thousands of them. My husband told me "oh we will bug bomb tomorrow" but I was worried. Then tonight we go into my bathroom to find thousands of them everywhere, walls, ceiling, sink (which we left plugged to make sure they didn't come from there), lights, and floor. Really they were everywhere. We live in an older manufactured home that has been remodeled. The garage was attached so that the window to our master bath opens into it instead of outside. We can see the massive amount of these things accumulating outside that window and coming in. There is absolutely no food in my garage. The only thing I can think is that there was a LOT of rain this winter and half our garage flooded we had things in there we couldn't avoid getting wet and we moved what we could and figured it would dry out since it gets really hot here. Could there be something still wet that we didn't notice because everything seems dry? Would fruit flies be attracted to something with no organic matter? The septic tank also for some dumb reason runs under the garage. We moved in a little over a year ago and before closing on our loan the tank was pumped and certified. I don't think it should have issues already. I've looked up sewer flies and that does not look like what we have. They look like fruit flies. Anyhow, there are so many of these things in my garage and subsequently on the outside of half of my house. I don't know how to get rid of them or where they could be coming from. Can I empty my garage and then bug bomb it? Could this be a septic issue I'm just not seeing?
 
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Old 06-24-17, 03:03 AM
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I'd be looking at solutions for drain flies (most likely with the water issues you describe) or fungus gnats. They all look similar unless you get them under a good magnifier.
 
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Old 06-25-17, 11:18 AM
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It just doesnít sound like typical fruit fly behavior to me. Do you see any on exterior of house?

Donít ďbombĒ the house of spray anything until we know what they are and even then that usually wonít solve anything anyway. All that will do is kill the exposed adult flies. The breeding and emerging will continue immediately.

The key to solving most insect problems and all fly problems is proper identification. Fly biologies and life cycles vary very differently. Knowing what specie they are will tell us where they tend to breed, what they eat, etc. That knowledge will lead us in a good direction.

Can you post close-up pics? In any case, take samples to the local county agricultural extension agent for ID. They are knowledgeable and objective and honest. They are familiar with local issues and pests.

Keep us posted.
 
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Old 06-25-17, 03:11 PM
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I have a couple pictures I'll post. They aren't great but hopefully it helps.
Luckily it seems (so far) like we've gotten it under control. Yesterday there seemed to be even more. Yes they were all over the outside of my house. We did bomb the garage to try and stop them from getting into my bathroom. We also taped plastic over the window to my bathroom. We sprayed home defense around the house and it didn't seem to make a difference. Then I went out in search of the source. I had looked before but I figured I'd try again. I noticed about 3 holes in the ground. They looked like gopher or ground squirrel holes. They are near where the septic is and there were thousands of these flies crawling out of them. We sprayed into the holes then covered them with dirt. Today there are almost none of these little bugs outside our house. I don't know if this is just a temporary reprieve or what. The holes must have really been the source. I was worried maybe somehow something burrowed and affected the septic tank but I figured I would smell it if that were the issue. I'm wondering if whatever lived down there died? Or could whatever lived in there been storing food that became infested? It seems crazy to have that many coming out of the ground. Name:  IMG_2404.jpg
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Old 06-25-17, 08:26 PM
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Never mind, it was a temporary reprieve. They are back tonight. Not as bad as before but they are outside again and in the window to the garage. This is so frustrating.
 
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Old 06-26-17, 07:10 AM
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Certainly does not look to me like a fruit fly. I've battled those before.
 
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Old 06-26-17, 12:46 PM
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Not a fruit fly or sewer fly. I searched for a while but canít come up with anything. Take it to an entomologist or the local county agricultural extension office for an objective identification. That will point us in the proper direction to discover their breeding source. We have to consider that the septic tank/field may be involved. Finding their source is the only way to solve this problem, which is usually the case with flies, large or small.

Spraying will only give temporary relief at best, which may be needed with population levels that high inside. Keep us posted.
 
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Old 06-26-17, 04:24 PM
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I sent a photo of a strange bug to my local agricultural extension office and they sure were helpful. They love to help people.

Bud
 
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