House Flies

Musca Domestica
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What do house flies look like?

house flies in tucson arizona

Females are typically longer than males, but both sizes depend on the food available. On an average, they are 1/6 inch long. Females also have a broader space between their reddish eyes. Both have sponging mouthparts. The abdomen is gray or yellowish with dark markings, with males having a yellow underside. Body covered with fine hairs.

Life cycle of the house fly

Complete metamorphosis

This is a fast life cycle normally complete within 14 days if prime environmental conditions exist. Females deposit white egg clusters numbering about 75-150 eggs over a three-day period; resulting in a total of 500 eggs. The eggs are laid in moist, organic debris including manure and contents of trash cans. The white, legless larvae (commonly referred to as maggots) feed on the debris and can reach 3/8 inch in length over a 3-7 day period. The larva moves to a cooler area to pupate constructing a case from its last molting skin. After 3-4 days, a docile adult emerges. Normal activity begins in about 15 hours.

Habits of house flies

  • Diet: Moist organic debris
  • Activity: Constant activity in areas with proper environmental conditions
  • Preferred Climate: Warm to hot temperatures, 70 to 90 degrees
  • Defense: Size, speed, and leg hairs that excrete a sticky fluid so they can stick to ceilings and other hard to reach places.
  • Cautions: Equated with spreading bacterial diseases
  • Home Invasion: Flies will enter homes through any crack and crevice in search of food and egg laying sites.

Are house flies dangerous?

Like other flies, house flies are capable of spreading bacteria and may be the source of illness. 

Where do you find house flies?

While fruit flies are most often found near drains, house flies are attracted to filth. You can often find them in piles of garbage, animal feed, or manure. Though they do not breed indoors, they may find their way into homes and other buildings through open doors and windows. 

Helpful hints for house flies

To keep house flies away, we recommend practicing sound sanitation practices in and around the home and also signing up for ongoing home pest control services

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