In which I pull my hair out — again!

This must be our year for pests. Which does not bode well for us with the upcoming addition of a flea magnet dog.

First, let me assure you that I am a reasonable housekeeper. I sweep the kitchen daily, wipe down counters and tables, and do not leave food out. My bathrooms are also kept clean. Not lick-the-counter clean, but passable. Or so I thought.

For the last nearly two weeks we have had what I have finally decided is a fruit fly infestation. At first I described them to a friend as “fruit fly-like” because they seemed to be bigger and faster than the previous versions of fruit flies I’ve been in contact with. But after exhaustive searching with your favorite search engine and mine, I must conclude they are indeed fruit flies. The mystery is – what is their food source? Also, why are they in my bathrooms???

Last Friday night I opened a bottle of wine and had a glass. I used my new Mickey-head cork for the remainder and left it on the counter. The next morning I discovered the (already existing) flies absolutely loved my wine. Either that or they are big Mickey fans.

So after my foray into the annals for ways to combat these creatures, I set up a trap. I cut the top off a 2 liter bottle of soda, poured some wine** in the bottom, and then put the top back in, upside down, creating a “lobster trap” for them. But this generation of fruit flies must be a lot smarter than the ones around when this suggestion was posted, because all they are doing is swarming/landing on the edge, and not venturing inside. And certainly not drowning in the liquid that I have treated with a drop of dish soap to break surface tension.

I created two more smaller/simpler ones by simply pouring a little wine** in a plastic cup and covering it with plastic wrap with a few holes punched in the top. These have been placed in the bathrooms, and I was surprised to discover several flies on the inside of the wrap within a few minutes of placing them. But still they are not getting down in the liquid and drowning, the little suckers!

So, calling all fruit fly experts – what else can I do?? And if you have any ideas on a hidden source I’ve overlooked, please, please, please tell me what to check! I must repeat – we have no fruit whatsoever!

** In case you are wondering, the wine used in the above-mentioned traps is cheap Wal-Mart wine. No true wines were harmed in the making of these traps.

2 responses to “In which I pull my hair out — again!

  1. Be calm, my friend. I have learned that the annual invasions of fruit flies, ants and ladybugs have nothing to do with me. In New England, they just ARE. For fruit flies, I eat, refrigerate or compost all fruit and veggies, then put out little bowls of organic cider vinegar with a drop of dishwashing liquid. Works like a charm. I would think wine would work, but since it isn’t, try some high quality cider vinegar and some little bowls. Good luck!

  2. I think I’d take the fruit flies over our flea infestation. Although we seem to have won. A mere $300 worth of Advantage for all the animals, and several cans of flea spray for the carpets, and washing all the bedding every freaking day . . .
    Hope the cider vinegar works.

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