Flies

Flies

Of the thousands of species of flies, only a few are common pests in and around the home. Some of the more common nuisance flies are the house fly (Musca domestica), the face fly (Musca autumnalis), the stable fly(Stomoxys calcitrans), the little house fly (Fannia canicularis), and several species of garbage fly (especially in the genus Phaenicia). These pests breed in animal wastes and decaying organic material from which they can pick up bacteria and viruses that may cause human diseases. In addition, adult stable flies (sometimes called “biting flies”) feed on mammalian blood and can give a painful bite.

  • Identification

    The house fly (Musca domestica) is a cosmopolitan companion of humans and domestic animals. House flies are generally found in greatest numbers during the hotter summer months. House flies are less than 3/8 inch in length and have four dark  tripes down the back of their thorax. House flies have sponging mouthparts and eat solid food by first liquefying it with their saliva.

    Damage

    Because they have sponging mouthparts, house flies cannot bite; however, they may play an important role in disease transmission to humans and animals. House flies serve as carriers of disease agents due to their predilection for feeding on animal wastes, garbage, and human foods. House flies are known to carry bacteria and viruses that cause conditions such as diarrhea, cholera, food poisoning, yaws, dysentery, and eye infections.