Flies are probably one the last things you want to see buzzing around your home. They are dirty, annoying, and worst of all, they lay a lot of eggs! When they get into your house, flies can become overwhelming. This often leaves us with the question, “how do I find a fly nest in my home?”
In reality, flies do not have simple nests. Instead, they lay eggs in piles around your home which makes finding where they reproduce extremely hard. Flies lay eggs in leftover food, pet droppings, kitchens, food scraps, compost bins, garden equipment, and clutter brought in from shoes.
Without further ado, let’s discuss how flies lay their eggs, as well as the most common places where they can lay eggs in your home!
How Do Flies Reproduce?
So it is pretty clear that when flies get in your house, more will appear soon. Are these offspring, however, or did the original flies recruit new ones? How many offspring does a single fly make? These are just a few of the questions that can plague homeowners with a fly infestation.
Most of the flies you see after an initial infestation are new offspring. Flies reproduce extremely quickly, so it is not uncommon for populations to grow rapidly after an infestation. However, adult flies can attract other adults as well, which can just exacerbate the problem of population growth.
In general, the fly reproduction cycle begins with an egg. According to Penn State, the mother fly can lay hundreds of eggs per batch. Each adult fly can make multiple batched per lifetime, yielding up to around one thousand eggs. That’s a lot per fly!
After a mere few days, these eggs will hatch and release a bunch of baby flies into the environment. Each adult fly can live for two weeks laying eggs, and it does not take long for babies to mature into adults. This all means that fly problems usually persist because of the sheer number of eggs laid by a single adult.
How Do I Find A Fly Nest In My Home?
In reality, flies do not make a traditional nest. By definition, a nest is a structure made by an animal (usually a bird or rodent of some type), to hold and facilitate the growth of offspring. For example, birds make nests to hold the eggs before hatching and protect the young while they are growing.
Instead, flies usually lay eggs in piles throughout your house. They prefer to lay eggs in/on substances that can support young offspring with a food supply. This usually means leftover food, spills, grease, messes, and even pet waste are all beacons for fly eggs.
If you are trying to locate fly eggs in your home, check these places, as flies characteristically stick to them. If you eliminate these fly breeding hotspots from your home, usually it is harder for an infestation to occur.
7 Places Flies Lay Eggs In Your Home
Now that we have discussed if flies make nests, how they reproduce, and even how they get in, we can get down to the nitty-gritty of places where they leg eggs inside.
Keep reading for just some of the many locations where flies often lay eggs in your home.
Leftover Food Attracts House Flies
One of the most notorious places for flies to lay eggs is in your leftover food. This can be food left out for long periods, old food in the fridge, or even small crumbs dropped off of big meals.
When flies find these lovely breeding spots, they understand the leftover food can support a new generation of offspring. They lay eggs in these piles of leftover food, and baby flies will soon appear. If you leave the food out for an extremely long amount of time, they can produce multiple generations.
According to the University Of Minnesota, produce left out on the counter for a long time (such as our beautiful fruit bowls) can harbor fly eggs.
Other than simply making sure food isn’t left out for a long time, cleaning up crumbs and getting rid of old produce can help to reduce the number of flies in your house.
Kitchen And Food Messes Are A Fly Breeding Ground
Similar to how food can attract flies, food messes and kitchen spills can also enable flies to breed. Messes such as uncleaned food spills, leftover crumbs, or even debris from baking or cooking can provide fly eggs with the necessary nutrients and food to survive until adulthood.
Bigger spills can often foster multiple generations of flies, and can spur on large home infestations which we do not want!
Oily, greasy, or rotting spills will attract the most flies, as these substances are nutrient and calorie-dense for their needy offspring. These substances are also high in protein, which supports to growth and reproduction of new flies.
Most spills and messes are easy to track. However, if you have a pre-existing fly infestation, look around for any you might have missed. These don’t even have to be large. For instance, it is not uncommon to find small groups of fly eggs on spilled oil or chemicals in your garage!
The only actual way to combat this issue is to prevent spills and clean up whenever they happen. We suggest looking around your kitchen and garage for any leaky containers, and to be vigilant whenever you make a spill.
If you are dealing with a significant greasy spill, try a heavy-duty product such as the STANLEY HOME PRODUCTS Original Degreaser!
In any other case with a moderate to mild spill, use something such as Mrs. Meyer’s Multi-Surface Cleaner Concentrate. This option is great because it is environmentally friendly and economical, and it allows you to choose the strength of your final cleaner.
Dried Foods Are A Hotspot For Fly Eggs
Although it may sound disgusting, flies and other insects are notorious for laying eggs in dried foods such as oats, rice, and even flour. Dried goods are a great place for fly eggs to hide, as they are usually well-protected, and they have an ample food supply.
If you see fly eggs in your dried goods or are even suspecting an infestation, the best option is to get rid of those foods and restock them. It is never worth future infestations to salvage some flour or oats!
Flies Love Indoor Compost
Compost is another great place for flies to lay eggs. It is a very similar material to what flies lay eggs on in nature. In the wild, flies usually lay their eggs on rotting organic material (which is exactly what compost it), so it makes sense why this material is so attractive to them.
Other than it being a substantial food source, compost is also attractive to flies because of the heat it can produce. This heat is optimal for supporting young eggs and flies, which are temperature sensitive.
Compost can also be attractive to flies if it does not have the correct carbon-nitrogen balance.
According to Cornell University, having the incorrect ratio of carbon to nitrogen can cause potent smells and nutrient imbalances in your compost. These smells and imbalances can attract flies to lay eggs.
To prevent your compost from becoming too smelly, you want to monitor it well, and make sure it has the correct nutrient (carbon-nitrogen balance). With the correct balance, there should be no intrusive smell that can attract flies.
Invest in some other products to seal off or mask the scent of your compost. Carbon filters are a great option that organically masks the scent of your compost. One great example of this is these 12 Pack Charcoal Filters.
You may also want to invest in a high-quality kitchen compost bin that can be sealed completely to prevent scent leakage. We recommend the EPICA Stainless Steel Compost Bin!
You can also use something like lavender to repel flies by placing it’s oil near the compost bin. Just keep in mind the lavender scent NEEDS to be stronger than the compost or else it won’t mask the scent. That’s why pairing it with a sealed container should work well.
Fly Eggs Come In On Outside/Garden Equipment
If you bring garden equipment inside, they can also harbor young fly eggs. If inside for too long, these fly eggs can hatch, or fall into places inside your home.
Usually, these infestations aren’t too much to worry about, as there isn’t a built-in source of food or shelter. The main tip for preventing this is to refrain from bringing garden equipment in and to inspect and clean whatever equipment you bring in.
Grass Clippings And Shoe Debris Can Bring In Fly Eggs
Grass clippings and other debris that come in on your shoes are other great mediums for fly eggs. Especially in the case of grass, fly eggs in these materials have ample food, heat, and shelter.
When you trod in grass or other outdoor debris on your shoes, loose eggs and drop all around your house. Grass clippings are an especially strong spreader of fly eggs, as they can stick to the bottoms of your shoes without you knowing.
Flies Love Pet Waste
One last outlet in which flies like to lay their eggs is in pet waste. Let’s be honest, our fluffy buddies can sometimes leave droppings behind in the yard, or even inside without us knowing. Similar to compost, fresh pet waste has just the right amount of heat and nutrients to support fly eggs.
It can also be a risk if you have ripped or unsealed dog waste bags near your house. For instance, if you have a pile of them sitting in your trash, it gives flies ample time to make new offspring.
To combat the issue of pet waste, you can try to be extra vigilant about where your animals go to the bathroom, and how you dispose of it. If they accidentally potty inside (this happens to the best of us), clean it thoroughly with some type of disinfectant spray.
If your dog goes to the bathroom outside and you must pick it up – use a high-quality bag, tie it tight, and try to keep it in a sealed container or as far away from indoors as possible. These ARM & HAMMER Easy Tear Disposable Dog Bages are a great durable option!
One you throw it out, you should take a good look at our guide on how to keep flies away from your garbage!
Why Are Flies So Specific About Where They Lay Eggs?
As you can presume from some of the specific places where flies lay their eggs, they are pretty picky! This pickiness is most likely because they want as many offspring to survive as possible. With this in mind, they want to lay eggs in a place capable of supporting all their babies.
Most places where flies lay eggs either have an ample food supply or protective spaces that can harbor young fly babies. Without these things, their offspring would not survive.
What Causes Flies To Come Inside?
You may wonder how flies are even getting inside. This is a good question because blocking entry points can stop an infestation before it even starts.
In most cases, flies come inside in search of food, warmth, shelter, or even safety from predators. Compared to the outside, our homes provide a haven for flies, giving them these factors.
While these are some primary factors, there are a plethora of reasons flies may want to come inside. Sometimes the reason depends on the species of fly you’re dealing with. Issues with flies coming inside may be more frequent during winter months, as flies will look for warmth with the changing weather patterns.
How Are Flies Getting Inside?
If you have a screen and fly prevention already set up, the flies still might get inside. I mean, even with every prevention on earth, it can seem like they are still finding new ways to invade.
In short, flies usually get inside through open doors, windows, and outside equipment you bring inside. If you bring in some outdoor equipment or outdoor children’s toys, you could accidentally bring fly eggs into your home.
According to the County of San Diego, flies may also get in through small holes and cracks associated with them. Especially in older homes, flies are prolific at sneaking their way in through window cracks and screen rips.
If you want another line of prevention against fly infestations, invest in some window screens/door covers. One great option is the NeatiEase Adjustable DIY Magnetic Window Screen.
If you’d like to learn more, I highly recommend checking out our guide on the ways that flies enter your house here!
What Do You Do If You Have A Fly Infestation?
In the unfortunate event you already have a fly infestation, there are a few main things you should do. First, try to locate the areas in which flies are laying eggs.
To do this, look for areas where flies are congregating, piles of fly eggs, or even observe if flies are actively laying eggs somewhere visible.
After you know where the flies are laying eggs, you can effectively remove and prevent them. Throw away whatever the eggs are on and avoid other things that attract flies.
Removing more fly attractants is a very important step, as flies reproduce quickly. If you only remove a few of the attractants, they could easily restart another infestation.
After you have eliminated the sources of new fly eggs, you can tackle the current flies. Flies may not live a long time, but they will try their hardest to lay as many eggs as possible in their brief lives.
If there is a large congregation of flies or if you don’t know where the flies are, you can try to set something out, such as the Pro Series Disposable Fly Trap.
After the flies are fully out of your house, there is still a chance they can get back in soon after. With this, use preventative measures such as pest repellents, or powerful scents to repel flies.
Call A Professional
No matter what size problem you have, it’s not a bad idea to call a professional. This especially applies to fly infestations, because they are small, reproduce quickly, and can hide in places you don’t know.
Professionals have a wealth of knowledge that they can use to tackle your problem head-on, solving it once and for all. Even if you are not looking for hands-on service, they can also give you some advice on what you should do in your specific situation.
If you are having trouble finding a pest professional near you, try using our handy-dandy pest control finder!
In the end, flies are a fickle foe for many homeowners. Being such a common pest, it seems like most people can never get rid of them in the end.
It is especially hard to locate where flies are laying eggs, as they do not create traditional nests. Instead, they lay eggs in specific places such as compost piles, food spills, and rotting produce.
Laying eggs in these areas supports new flies and allows their population to grow. As mentioned, some of the most common places where homeowners find fly eggs are in dried foods, indoor compost, pet waste piles, grass clipping, and kitchen spills/messes.
There are a few things you should do to curb a fly infestation, such as locating piles of eggs, getting rid of pre-existing flies, and repelling new ones from coming in. As always, however, we recommend you use a recognized pest professional to help you with your fly woes.
In any case, flies are a pain most homeowners face, and we must be all prepared to deal with them, so happy fly repelling!
Oldroyd, H. (1964). The natural history of flies. The natural history of flies.
Christenson, L. D., & Foote, R. H. (1960). Biology of fruit flies. Annual review of entomology, 5(1), 171-192.
Baker, B. S. (1989). Sex in flies: the splice of life. Nature, 340(6234), 521-524.
Fletcher, M. T., & Kitching, W. (1995). Chemistry of fruit flies. Chemical reviews, 95(4), 789-828.
Zack is a Nature & Wildlife specialist based in Upstate, NY, and is the founder of his Tree Journey and Pest Pointers brands. He has a vast experience with nature while living and growing up on 50+ acres of fields, woodlands, and a freshwater bass pond. Zack has encountered many pest situations over the years and has spent his time maintaining and planting over 35 species of trees since his youth with his family on their property.
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