General Question

ladyv900's avatar

Do gnats, fruit flies, and those other types of tiny flies die out in the winter?

Asked by ladyv900 (713points) October 23rd, 2010

I forgot what they other very tiny type are called(the name of it is kinda long) but they appear and multiply a lot unless you mix up some vinegar, apple cider, and dish soap to make them sink in.Also they sometimes come from bathroom/kitchen sinks, drains, even sometimes through out the rain,and the most annoying part they fly in your face even if you did bathe or don’t have anything sweet scented on you,just your body heat

.Anyway, Do gnats, fruit flies, and those other type of tiny flies survive throughout the winter or do they die?

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6 Answers

Aster's avatar

I’d like to know, too. I wouldn’t leave any real ripe bananas sitting out !

zenvelo's avatar

outdoors, if it gets cold where you live, they’ll die. But not in a nice warm moist place indoors. Indoor plant soils are notorious for hosting these types of bugs.

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

The insects you mentioned have relatively short lives. If they breed and leave behind larvae, the larvae will hatch with the proper temperature. For example, in Florida, insects are seen year-round, where as the further north you go in the US, they disappear as soon as it gets too cold.

I doubt that they come up through drains. They may be attracted to the water or scent.

gasman's avatar

Most insects, including flies, that seem to disappear during winter in temperate regions, actually lie dormant underground or in other protected locations. Generally they enter the pupal stage of the life cycle (for flies the stages are: egg, grub, pupa, & adult) during the cold months, emerging as adults in the spring. In some species the adults survive the winter as adults, being fairly dormant when temperatures drop.

They couldn’t simply “die off” or the species wouldn’t survive year after year. The actual adult flies that you see are mostly dead by winter. It’s their offspring that emerge the following spring.

gasman's avatar

correction—fly larvae are maggots, not grubs

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

I retract the response about drains.

Drain fly (Psychoda spp): If wet conditions from plumbing leaks are permitting fly breeding, correct plumbing problems. To control flies coming out of drains, thoroughly clean pipes out, removing the gelatinous crud that builds up on the inside of pipes. (Do not forget to clean out the garbage disposal.) To help loosen the gelatinous crud, pouring boiling water down the drain may also be helpful. Never pour insecticides down the drain! Source

@gasman Adult flies do not lie dormant underground during the winter months. Flies typically survive from 15 – 25 days, and can live up to two months if the conditions are right. Larvae need to eat. It is in the pupa stage where they can stay dormant through the cold spells.

Fruit flies have a similar lifespan.

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