Flies

Flies: Facts, Identification & Control

More than 100 pathogens are associated with the house fly, including Salmonella, Staphylococcus, E. coli and Shigella. These pathogens can cause disease in humans and animals, including typhoid fever, cholera, bacillary dysentery and hepatitis. Sanitation is critical to controlling these pests, but accurate identification is essential for successful fly control. Here are some other things you should know about flies and fly control:

fly closeup
  • Depending on the species, the life expectancy of a fly is eight days to two months or, in some cases, up to a year.
  • Flies belong to the order Diptera, meaning two wings. There are more than 16,000 species of flies in North America.
  • Flies plague every part of the world except the polar ice caps.
  • One pair of flies can produce more than 1 million offspring through their offsprings’ offspring in a matter of weeks.
  • Millions of microorganisms may flourish in a single fly’s gut, while a half-billion more swarm over its body and legs.
  • Flies spread diseases readily because they move quickly from rotting, disease-laden garbage to exposed human foods and utensils.
  • Because they only have two wings, flies land often and therefore can deposit thousands of bacteria each time they land.
  • U.S. Department of Agriculture sources reveal that flies contaminate or destroy $10 billion worth of agricultural products annually.
  • Every time a fly lands, it sloughs off thousands of microbes. If a fly lands on food or utensils, customers may ingest germs that can trigger serious illness such as diarrhea, food poisoning, meningitis and bloodstream infections.