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Everything About Phorid Flies and How to Eliminate them From your
Home or Business

Name Phorid Fly
Latin Name Megaselia spp.
Nicknames/common names Humpback Fly, Sewer Fly, Scuttle Fly

How do you get rid of Phorid Flies?
Professional methods
Physical control measures must be put into place, repair screens, clean drains, locate and remove harbourages and other food sources. If the breeding material being used by your Phorid Fly population is not found and removed, flies will continue to reproduce. Baits, traps and insecticides may also be required if physical control measures do not suffice. Contact Addison Pest Control to schedule an inspection by a licensed Technician who will identify your pest species and tailor an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) program specific to your pest population.

How to identify Phorid Flies
Adult Phorid Flies range from 2-3 mm in length, and larvae measure up to 3 mm in length. Phorid Fly maggots are cream coloured and pupating adults emerge as black or dull brown; some are more yellowish in colour. Both males and females have pairs of sharp piercing teeth thought to aid young adults in breaking out of their pupal shells. Frequently mistaken for gnats, Phorid Flies also resemble biting black flies because of their arched thorax (humpback appearance) and small heads; however, they do not bite.

Life cycle/stages & anatomy
Phorid Flies undergo a complete metamorphosis: egg, larva (maggot), pupa and adult. Under ideal conditions, the life cycle can complete in 14-21 days. Adult males emerge roughly two days before adult females to feed to develop healthy sperm for immediate reproduction.

Signs of a Phorid Fly Infestation
Attracted to carrion, garbage dumps, warm and moist decomposing matter, homeowners may find these flies flying around in bathrooms, kitchens, near open drains and potted plants, or scurrying across computer and television screens. Phorid Flies breed inside mausoleums, crypts and coffins despite decomposition gases and embalming fluids and are also strongly attracted to lights. They commonly land on food and are capable of transmitting pathogenic bacteria to humans and pets.

Where did they come from / how did I get them?
Breeds in decaying organic matter like slime deposits in filthy drains, or humidifier, fridge and ice machine condensation pans. Phorid flies may also breed in abandoned carcasses and diseased potted plants; wherever organic matter and standing water are present.

What do Phorid Flies eat?
Some species of Phorid Fly feed on plant fungus while others are parasites for larger insects. Like all domestic flies, Phorid Flies consume human and pet food, will scavenge garbage and ingest excrement and any other decomposing matter.

How Serious are Phorid Flies?
The common Phorid Fly that you will likely encounter in the washroom, scuttling across your screen, or hovering around your cat litter is likely to carry pathogenic bacteria that can be transmitted to you and your family. Mechanical transmission occurs when Phorid Flies collect pathogens on their legs and mouthparts as they feed on decaying organic matter, on faeces and dead animal tissue, and transfer them to human food by direct surface contact. With their sucking mouthparts, Phorid Flies need to feed on liquid material and so they will regurgitate semi-digested liquid food material from their previous meal onto their next food source to soften and consume it. Phorid Flies leave dangerous vomit and faeces all over your food, and food preparation surfaces when their populations invade your home.

Phorid Flies do not bite, although both males and females have pairs of sharp piercing teeth. They do not use them for feeding or puncturing flesh for blood meal, but Phorid Flies will feed on blood if it oozes from the body using their sucking mouthparts.

How Addison Can Help Eliminate a Phorid Flies
Beyond removing and locating breeding material, cloves, lavender, basil, bay leaves, mint, marigold, wormwood, and rue all function as natural repellents and can be incorporated into DIY fly control systems. Cider and vinegar traps, glue traps and fly swatters may act as temporary solutions for killing adult flies. When home remedies fail to correct your domestic fly infestation, contact Addison Pest Control.

How Addison can help Prevent Phorid Fly Infestations in the Future
To avoid pesky Phorid Fly populations from developing in and around your home, dispose of all rotting organic matter, keep food covered and your kitchen and bathroom drains clear of slime. Dispose of pet faeces promptly and remove any carcasses or waste from your indoor and outdoor spaces. Keeping your property free of potential breeding sites is the most effective preventative measure against all domestic flies. You may consider scheduling a sewage system inspection by a local plumber.

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