House Flies and Disease

House Fly Illustration

Why Are House Flies a Problem?

House flies are unpleasant to have around. These pests create an eyesore in homes and often fly in people’s faces or hover over food. While these behaviors are frustrating on their own, these insects also carry a variety of bacteria and other disease causing organisms.

Links Between House Flies and Disease

With their diet of feces, trash, rotting produce, and spoiled meats, house flies constantly pick up pathogens. The insects then carry these germs and leave them behind wherever they land. The transfer process only takes a matter of seconds.

In addition to spreading the bacteria that cling to their bodies, these flies often vomit and defecate where they land and feed. These pests often gather in kitchens and buzz around food, so this behavioral tendency adds to the potential spread of house fly diseases.

What Diseases Do House Flies Carry?

Researchers suspect that house flies can harbor at least 65 illnesses that infect people. Some of the most common house fly diseases transmitted in the U.S. include food poisoning, dysentery, and diarrhea. These pests may also transmit the eggs of parasitic worms, which cause their own issues.

Other diseases carried by house flies include:

  • Anthrax

  • Cholera

  • Salmonella

  • Tuberculosis

  • Typhoid

Controlling the Spread of House Flies and Disease

One way to stop house fly diseases from spreading is to keep the insects out of homes. To deter fly activity, keep drains clean, consistently empty, clean and keep garbage cans covered, plus clean homes regularly. To avoid letting the pests inside, make sure all window and door screens are intact.

For an established infestation, chemical control may be the best option. Because improperly handling pesticides can be unsafe, homeowners should contact the experts at Orkin. Technicians have the training to deal with house fly problems safely.

Resources

Dig Deeper on House Flies

How Long Do Flies Live?

Life Expectancy of House Flies

House Fly Sounds

Red House Flies

Life Cycle of House Flies

Lesser House Flies

House Fly Problems

House Fly Larvae

House Fly Eyes

House Flies and Disease

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