Flies are among the most annoying and hated animals in the animal kingdom (it’s a tie between them and mosquitoes). Many facts about flies are unknown to you. This is due to the fact that lots of humans today associate flies only with negative adjectives, likunsanitary’ and bothersome’. Even the most fearsome animals can’t escape being ruthlessly bitten, stung and hounded by them. It’s a real shame that most living creatures get hassled by flies, considering that flies (all 120,000 known species of them) are still going strong. They still seem unfazed by manmade pesticides, fly swatters, and every other weird method we have tried to get rid of them with.
In this article, we will explore some fascinating facts about flies that you may not be aware of. From their incredible vision and flight capabilities to their vital ecological role, flies play a significant part in our natural world.
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15 Different Types of Flies
- House Fly (Musca domestica)
- Fruit Fly (Drosophila melanogaster)
- Blowfly (Calliphoridae)
- Horsefly (Tabanidae)
- Deer Fly (Chrysopsidae)
- Stable Fly (Stomoxys calcitrans)
- Sand Fly (Phlebotominae)
- Black Fly (Simuliidae)
- Crane Fly (Tipulidae)
- Hoverfly (Syrphidae)
- Flesh Fly (Sarcophagidae)
- Cluster Fly (Polleniidae)
- Tsetse Fly (Glossinidae)
- Bot Fly (Oestridae)
- Drain Fly (Psychodidae)
Top 20 Interesting Facts about Flies
Let’s dive into the intriguing world of flies and discover some remarkable facts about these often overlooked insects:
- Fact – 1:Flies are part of the order Diptera, which means “two wings.” Unlike most insects that have two pairs of wings, flies have only one pair of wings. This adaptation allows them to have a more efficient flight.
- Fact – 2:The second pair of wings in flies has evolved into small balancing organs called halteres. These halteres are knob-like structures that oscillate during flight, helping flies maintain stability and maneuverability in the air.
- Fact – 3:Flies have compound eyes composed of thousands of individual lenses called ommatidia. Each ommatidium captures a small portion of the surrounding visual field, and the brain combines the information from all ommatidia to create a mosaic-like image. This structure provides flies with a wide field of vision, enabling them to detect movements and spot predators or potential mates.
- Fact – 4:Flies have superior visual capabilities compared to humans. They can perceive a broader range of colors, including ultraviolet light, which is invisible to humans. This allows them to see patterns and signals that are not apparent to us.
- Fact – 5: The rapid wing movements of flies enable them to perform extraordinary aerial maneuvers. Their wings can beat up to 200 times per second, allowing them to change direction quickly, hover in place, and even fly backward.
- Fact – 6:Flies have a unique feeding mechanism called sponging. Instead of biting or chewing their food, flies regurgitate digestive enzymes onto the food source. These enzymes break down the food into a liquid form, which the flies then suck up using a sponge-like structure called the proboscis.
- Fact – 7:Some fly species have mouthparts specialized for piercing and sucking blood. For example, horseflies and mosquitoes have elongated mouthparts that can pierce the skin of their hosts to obtain blood meals. This adaptation allows them to feed on the blood of mammals, birds, and even reptiles.
- Fact – 8:Flies possess tiny adhesive pads on their feet that allow them to walk upside down on ceilings and walls. These pads secrete a sticky substance that forms temporary molecular bonds with the surface, enabling flies to cling securely even on smooth vertical surfaces.
- Fact – 9:Flies are incredibly adaptable and can be found in almost every habitat on Earth. They inhabit diverse environments, including forests, meadows, wetlands, deserts, and urban areas. Some species have even colonized extreme environments such as the Arctic and high-altitude regions.
- Fact – 10:Flies play a vital role in ecosystems as decomposers. They feed on decaying organic matter, including dead animals, rotting plants, and feces. By breaking down these organic materials, flies accelerate the decomposition process and recycle nutrients back into the ecosystem.
- Fact – 11:Blowflies, a type of fly, are important in forensic investigations. Forensic entomologists use the presence of blowfly larvae and their developmental stages to estimate the time of death of a human or animal corpse. By studying the life cycle of blowflies on the remains, experts can gather valuable information for criminal investigations.
- Fact – 12:Flies serve as significant pollinators for certain plant species. While searching for nectar, flies inadvertently pick up pollen grains on their bodies and transfer them from one flower to another. This process facilitates cross-pollination and helps ensure the reproductive success and genetic diversity of plants.
- Fact – 13:The common house fly (Musca domestica) has an average lifespan of about 28 days. However, this can vary depending on environmental conditions and available food sources. Flies have a short life cycle, allowing them to quickly reproduce and populate an area.
- Fact – 14:Fly larvae, commonly known as maggots, have been used in medical settings for centuries to clean wounds. Maggots feed on dead tissue, selectively consuming necrotic (dead) material while leaving healthy tissue untouched. This process, known as maggot therapy or larval debridement therapy, promotes wound healing and prevents infections.
- Fact – 15:Flies have a rapid reproductive cycle, allowing them to produce a large number of offspring within a short period. Some species can lay hundreds of eggs at a time. This high reproductive capacity ensures the survival of their species, even in challenging environments.
- Fact – 16:The Gauromydas heros, found in Australia, is the largest fly species in the world. It can reach a length of up to 2.4 inches (6 cm). Despite its size, this fly is relatively harmless and feeds on nectar.
- Fact – 17:Flies have a highly developed sense of smell. They possess specialized olfactory receptors that allow them to detect and distinguish a wide range of scents. This enables flies to locate food sources, identify potential mates, and avoid danger.
- Fact – 18:The common fruit fly (Drosophila melanogaster) is one of the most extensively studied organisms in scientific research. Its small size, rapid reproduction, and well-characterized genome make it an ideal model organism for studying genetics, development, behavior, and diseases.
- Fact – 19:Flies can potentially transmit diseases to humans and animals. House flies, in particular, are known to carry pathogens such as bacteria, viruses, and parasites on their bodies and mouthparts. When flies come into contact with food, surfaces, or wounds, they can transfer these disease-causing organisms, posing a risk to human and animal health.
- Fact – 20:Flies have been present on Earth for millions of years. Fossil evidence suggests that flies have existed for at least 150 million years, adapting and diversifying over time. Their ability to thrive in various environments and their ecological contributions have ensured their evolutionary success.
10 Best Ways to Get Rid of flies
- Maintain Cleanliness: Flies are attracted to unclean environments, so one of the most effective ways to get rid of them is to keep your surroundings clean. Regularly clean up spills, remove food debris, and dispose of trash properly.
- Seal Entry Points: Prevent flies from entering your home by sealing any potential entry points, such as gaps in windows, doors, and screens. Ensure that doors and windows are closed tightly, and repair any damaged screens.
- Use Fly Screens: Install fly screens on windows and doors to create a barrier that prevents flies from entering your living spaces while still allowing fresh air circulation.
- Remove Standing Water: Flies are often attracted to standing water, so eliminate any stagnant water sources around your property. Regularly empty and clean bird baths, pet water bowls, and clogged gutters.
- Proper Food Storage: Store food securely in airtight containers to prevent flies from accessing and contaminating it. Keep fruits and vegetables refrigerated or covered, and promptly clean up spills or crumbs.
- Utilize Fly Traps: Place fly traps or sticky flypaper in areas where flies are commonly found. These traps attract and capture flies, helping to reduce their population indoors. Consider using a fly catcher machine, which uses light to attract and trap flies without the need for chemicals or sticky surfaces.
- Natural Repellents: Use natural fly repellents to deter flies from your living spaces. Some effective options include essential oils like lavender, eucalyptus, or citronella, as flies are repelled by their strong scents.
- Maintain Outdoor Hygiene: Keep your outdoor spaces clean and tidy. Regularly clean up pet waste, compost bins, and garbage cans to discourage flies from congregating near your home.
- Employ Fly Swatters or Bug Zappers: For individual flies, use a fly swatter or an electric bug zapper to eliminate them. Exercise caution and follow safety guidelines when using electrical devices.
- Seek Professional Pest Control: If you have a severe fly infestation that persists despite your efforts, consider contacting a professional pest control service. They have the expertise and specialized treatments to effectively eliminate flies and prevent future infestations.
If you do suspect a flies problem, immediately call the experts. Get rid of them as soon as possible before they take place at your house. We at HiCare provide professional pest control services all over India to prevent fly-borne diseases. Call us on 08828333888 or visit our website HiCare to know more about the service.