Monday, September 10, 2012

Shoo Flies

Unfortunately this post is not about Shoo Fly Pies, that delicious Amish treat. No, it is about the current bane of my existence: Fruit Flies. Both my onboard and onshore galleys have had fruit fly infestations this year. We've all dealt with fruit flies before -- typically I just clear the counters of all fresh produce (it pains me to put tomatoes and bananas in the fridge, but ya gotta do what ya gotta do) and, a few days later, no fruit flies.

This year though, the flies seem to have become more tenacious. My first infestation while we were onboard, sent me to the Google where I found a number of helpful suggestions, most employing vinegar, dish soap, a small dish and patience. The first three are easy, the fourth, not so much. But. if you follow these instructions and give it a few days you can wave those flies goodbye:

Shoo Fly Trap

1) Fill a small saucer or cup with red wine vinegar (or apple cider vinegar)
2) Add a drop of dish washing soap
3) If desired, add a small piece of ripe fruit (strawberries and banana peels work well)
4) Set dish on kitchen counter and let it be. The flies will hover around the edge, and eventually take the plunge.  The dish soap gives the solution some weight and speeds the drowning process. Be patient, this could take 3-4 days to get rid of all the flies.

Two options -
1) A small cup:

A saucer:
You can see more action in the saucer photo, where I was using apple cider vinegar, but I have found that the cup with red wine vinegar is more efficient. Look very closely at that photo and you will see the flies on the bottom. Gross, I know. But flies on your food is worse.

Full disclosure:

I empty and refill the dish every day or two.
The flies also seem to be drawn to wine -- red in particular. Personally, I don't want to use perfectly good wine on the fruit flies, but the last drop in the bottle can always be added to the vinegar.
Be sure to remove all baskets and paper products from the area -- the flies seem to be drawn to fibers.
Empty your trash and recycling often while doing this.
Keep your garbage disposal and drain clean. Make a volcano in your drain with baking soda and vinegar, then rinse thoroughly.

1 comment:

  1. Bless your heart, Martha! I've never had this problem before, but these things have been plaguing me the better part of the last several months. I'll give this a try.