14 September 2009

Hotel Drosophila: you can check out, but you can never leave

If you have a fruit fly infestation in your kitchen, like the one we've been having for the last several days, here's a way to get rid of them without insecticides.

Get a small plastic container, put some pieces of partially rotten fruit in it and then leave it with the lid off on a counter top where the fruit flies are loitering. Now leave the room for a while, say, 20 minutes. When you return, there will be a bunch of them Drosophila in the container. Pick up the lid and bring it very slowly to the container—the fruit flies seem to have good eye sight and/or are very sensitive to any movements around them—and when the lid is just about over the opening, bring it down quickly to seal the container. Take the container outside, open the lid and release the prisoners, then bring the container back in and repeat the process until the numbers of the flies come down to a tolerable level (you can't eliminate them all).

Here is my Drosophila Motel (patent pending, of course!) named after the famous Roach Motel. The suckers inside will soon be deported. The red-stained paper was from a raspberry box.

Yes, you may have to repeat the process several times, but, hey, would you rather spray your kitchen with an insecticide?


Cindy said...

Nice. What do you have for ants?


Can't help you with ants. Ants come & go. You can't get rid of them unless you get rid of the nest. Fruit flies, on the other hand, are localized; they are all there. So it's easier to round them up & throw them out.

Honestly, though, ants don't bother me that much even when they are in the kitchen.

Wanderin' Weeta said...

Better still, put a funnel in the top of the jar (use a round container). The fruit flies will have trouble getting out. And, they won't see you coming when you put a lid on the funnel.

Bob Abela said...

I agree about the ants, I can tolerate them, even in the kitchen. If you keep a lid on things, they may stick around but are rarely too much of a nuisance. But that's just me. For others, one ant is too many.

Thanks for the tip on fruit flies. I considered doing something like this, glad to hear it works.

Cindy said...

I guess you guys don't have Argentine ants where you live. They're terrible pests.

xoggoth said...

I like fruit flies. When we are sitting outside in the summer they annoy the wife by hovering around and falling into her whisky. I'm ok as they don't seem to like vodka.

Anything that annoys the wife is ok with me, saves me thinking up ways of doing it.

js.0777 said...

i keep getting slups in my kitchen and its freaking me out they are even baby ones and i get them every night, how do i stop them


Figure out how they are entering the kitchen & then try to seal up the holes.