Pest Control Austin TX: Phorid Flies

Phorid Fly 195x246This has been an amazing year for outdoor activities compared to the last several years. Although we are somewhat dry now we still have some green grass, green trees and the occasional shower or two. The early spring rains and milder temperatures did however lead to increased pest populations. In February the carpenter ants started swarming and then in March it was swarming termites. April showers brought May flowers and scorpions and spiders and ants and roachesand the list goes on and on. The really big event for June actually started the last week of May. Crickets exploded onto the scene. On top of the normal day to day calls we received 10-20 calls for crickets each during the month of June. Crickets were everywhere. Once crickets have invaded, and there can be hundreds or even thousands when they do, they have to be killed. Then you are left with the carrion. Thousands of dead crickets not only create a very bad smell but they also attract other pests. Birds, rodents and other insects will converge on the scene if all of the dead crickets are not removed. Starting in early July, this among other things lead to an outbreak of “gnat” calls. I was called to one of our commercial accounts because apparently every level of the rather large structure was infested with “gnats”. I met the property manager outside the building and we discussed the reported problem. While we slowly walked around outside we noticed a smell much like a rotting meat. We quickly realized that we were right next to a drain that was full of dead crickets. The crickets were the source of the smell and upon closer inspection we discovered they were also the source of several different species of flies. I identified large flesh flies, medium size house flies, some what looked like millions of gnats. The word gnats gets thrown around a lot whenever people, are bothered by tiny flying insects buzzing around their faces, drinks, food and basically just being obnoxious. In most cases the so called gnats are one of the small flies like fruit flies. In this case the gnats turned out to be Phorid flies. Phorid flies are very tiny and are able to squeeze through the smallest of cracks. This building was surrounded by these drains and almost every one of them was holding water and piles of dead crickets. The Phorid flies were taking full advantage of the nice wet breeding habitat that also provided an ample food source for their cute little larvae. Phorid flies have habit of perching and running around rather than flying. These Phorid flies were perched on window sills and the window glass all the way around the building. So we identified the pest and the source now what? I explained to the property manager that the very first step to eliminating this pest was going to have to be eliminating the food source. The stinking rotting crickets were going to have to be removed. Not only that, but all of the decaying organic debris left behind from the crickets would have to be eliminated. This is where one of our “green” products comes in to play. After all of the drains were cleared of crickets and as much of the debris had been cleared we treated the drains and drain lines with a foam product. This product contains microscopic microbes that when applied to organic matter immediately begin to grow spores and multiply. The microbes then consume all of the organic matter that was supporting the fly larvae. Some aerosols were used indoors to give immediate relief from the adult flies that were already inside the building and within a few days the drains were clear of the Phorid fly larvae. On a side note the smell had been eliminated as well.

Pest Control Austin TX: Some typical places different small flies can be found to be breeding.

  • Dirty drain pipes that hold organic matter
  • Potted plants that are over watered
  • Standing water that is allowed to remain over time
  • Leaking water lines that create moisture problems

The list can go on and on so you may have to do quite a bit of digging but remember. Where flies are a problem, there is always a source. Eliminate the source and you eliminate the flies.