It started with one, and now they are everywhere. They are cluster flies, or pollenia rudis. They are members of the blowfly family – those really gross flies that lay their eggs on food – but cluster flies don’t do that. They’re just here, in our house, spending a cozy winter.
I’m not saying we are inundated with these things, but there are enough of them that I see them on the windows and hear them as they rather slowly buzz around. They first entered our lives about a month and a half ago. Being the laissez-faire kind of person I am, I tried to ignore them for a while, until my baser instincts suddenly kicked in, and I chased them around the house with a rolled up newspaper, flailing wildly and knocking things off the windowsills. I did manage to kill some, and then one day, there weren’t any. I figured their unwelcome visit had ended. But last week, I heard that familiar buzzing, and there they were. Several of the loathsome creatures were taking up residence again.
My research tells me that these flies should be controlled outdoors BEFORE they come inside. They apparently lay they eggs on earthworms, and the flies hatch and try to come in through even the tiniest of crevices before the weather turns cold.
I looked up control measures and almost all of them involve chemicals – either applied outside where you think they might be entering or inside where they are making their little fly-homes. But there’s also a trap called “Cluster Buster” which is filled with very finely ground eggshell particles that the flies sink into like quicksand. Each trap can apparently hold up to 1,000 flies and work for two to four years.
Gonna git me one of them fly traps!!!!!…even if they are nearly $25 each. Actually, I bought two, one for the living room and another for the kitchen where they seem to like hanging out on the sliding patio doors. I will let you know if they solve my disgusting little problem.
I’ve always hated winter houseflies — they always seem more than usually sluggish and swollen. We had our own plague a month or so ago. I went old-school and hung up one of those fly-strips in the kitchen. It was ugly, but I have to admit that I took some pleasure in watching them die, glued to that streamer.
As I said, I am not the kind of person who goes around killing things, but I do make an exception for these flies. My husband thinks I am overreacting (hate that word) but I just can’t stand to see flies – especially when they land on my dog’s food dish etc. I am impatiently awaiting the arrival of my fly traps.
I hate those flies! There was one around here the other day and that means his friends are coming.
Yes, if you see one, you should be prepared for a whole gang. They drive me nuts.