How to Prevent Fruit Flies

Banish pesky fruit flies with these easy tips.

Photo by Peter Oumanski

“We serve fruit and juice to customers at my boutique. The problem: We’ve got fruit flies!”

Kayce, via e-mail

The fix: First shut the doors and windows to let outdoor flies know that the buffet is closed. (Don’t rely on screens; fruit flies can fit through the holes.) Next, spritz the areas near the food station, including the bottoms of trash cans and cracks in the floorboards, with all-purpose cleaner, then wipe with a paper towel. This will rid the store of decaying organic matter, which is what attracts flies and is where they breed, says Stoy Hedges, an entomologist for the pest-control company Terminix. As for future snacking, place an oscillating fan near the food to discourage flies from landing, and store drinks in a cooler, not out on the counter. Finally, adhere to a stringent cleaning routine, says Allison Taisey, an entomologist at the northeastern IPM Center, in Ithaca, new york. take out the garbage twice a day, scrub trash cans weekly, and mop the floor and wipe down the tabletops every night.

For more tips, see How to Get Rid of Fruit Flies.

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