The Real Reason Fruit Flies Are Taking Over Your Kitchen

There is nothing as appealing as a perfect piece of fruit, whether we're talking about juicy peaches, luscious berries, or a banana at the peak of ripeness. The trouble with these mouthwatering pieces of ripe fruit is that we're not the only ones that are attracted to them. Fruit flies are, too, and as Thought Co. points out, if you have a bowl of fruit ripening on your kitchen counter, chances are you'll have a few fruit flies trying to make their way into your home, just to get to the same pieces of fruit that gives you so much joy. And because they're tiny, they cane can invade your home through minute spaces in window screens, cracks around doors, or even by hitching a ride on the fruits and vegetables you pick up from the supermarket.

Iowa State University entomologist Gregory Courtney tells Time that if you have a fruit fly presence in your kitchen, but your fruit isn't rotting, the flies likely haven't started making their way into your fruit where they can lay their eggs. But when fruit fly babies are born, they and their parents feed on anything and everything that might be ripening or fermenting.

There are ways of dealing with a fruit fly infestation

Fruit flies are especially prevalent around late summer and early fall because this is when harvest season comes around. Worse, it doesn't take much to get a fruit fly infestation going because the birth-to-reproduction cycle of a fruit fly only takes a couple of weeks in the favorable indoor temperatures of your home. Fruit flies and their offspring will feed on anything from fruit to discarded food containers that might contain minute, rotting leftovers. 

To keep your kitchen fruit fly-free, only buy enough fruits and vegetables to eat, and when they look like they're about to become super ripe, get rid of them (and get rid of the trash), or store ripe produce in the refrigerator. Keep your countertops as clean as possible, and keep all trash disposal areas and drains free of any food residue. Country Living lists a few home remedies that will help you deal with a fruit fly infestation, including filling a bowl with apple cider vinegar (fruit flies like the sweetness), covering it with a plastic wrap, and puncturing the covering. Once they enter, the plastic wrap will trap them. Leaving out an old bottle of beer may also catch them because fruit flies can get in but they can't get out through the narrow neck.