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Guest or Pest: Fruit Fly

Mar 12, 2024

fruit fly close up

What is a Fruit Fly?

As the name suggests, fruit flies survive by consuming ripened fruits and vegetables, so it’s fairly common to find them flitting around bananas, tomatoes, or other countertop produce in your home. These tiny flies measure about 3 or 4 millimeters long and have red eyes and black and tan bodies. Their eggs are extremely small – too small to see with the naked eye – and they are laid in the same decaying matter that the insect consumes. They can lay up to 500 eggs at a time and mature into adulthood within a week, so it can seem as if an infestation has appeared in your kitchen overnight. 

Guest or Pest?

It might be surprising to learn that fruit flies are often considered beneficial insects – as long as they stay outside. This is because fruit flies consume the decaying waste of fruits, which, if left untouched, can turn into bigger problems, like plant disease, or can attract more challenging pests, like rodents. However, fruit flies can certainly be a big nuisance when they make it inside your home. 


Fortunately, it’s fairly simple to control fruit flies in the home. Prevent an infestation of fruit flies by consuming your fruit before it is overripe, or move it to the refrigerator to keep it safe. If you do identify fruit flies in your home, quickly remove any rotting fruits and vegetables – make sure you check the pantry, the garbage disposal, and the trash! This will remove their food source and any fruit fly eggs. Catch the remaining fruit flies with a simple fly trap.

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