The “Yeti” of Flies?

moth flyMany home owners are seeing a VERY hairy fly, who’s a poor flier by the way, hanging around in the kitchen and bathroom lately. Called Drain Flies or Moth Flies (or other names not publishable) they are 1/16 to 1/4 inch long, dark brown to black and very hairy.  Even their long antennae are hairy and their pointed leaf-shaped hairy wings are very recognizable. 

Moth Flies are most active at night, are attracted to light, and usually found in kitchens or bathrooms.  They breed in the algae, bacteria and organic matter found in drains, septic tanks, dirty trash cans and other wet environments rich in organic matter.      

 The adult Moth Flies will be found emerging from drains, flying around lights or resting on vertical surfaces near their breeding site, again typically not good fliers.  The larvae are aquatic and found in any liquid containing the algae, bacteria or organic matter they consume.  If it looks gunky or slimy, it’s perfect for Moth Flies to feed on and breed in.

Simply cleaning the drain with a liquid drain cleaner will not remove the bacteria Moth Fly larvae feed on.  Mechanically cleaning the drain all the way to the trap with a stiff brush, cleaning agent and very hot water is required to remove the bacteria, algae etc. 

Unfortunately, thoroughly cleaning the drain to eliminate the Moth Fly problem would be a best case scenario.  If the source of the Moth Fly issue is a plumbing leak under the slab, however, it can get really complicated.  If the Moth Flies are breeding under the slab, it may be necessary to break a hole in the slab, repair the plumbing and remove and replace the contaminated soil.        

Some good news is that microbiotic drain cleaners can be helpful in minimizing Moth Fly issues when used regularly.  A piece of tape or a clear cup can be placed over the drains to trap emerging adults and help determine the source of the issue.  

If you should be experiencing a Moth Fly invasion, or any other pest issue, please contact Mr. Bugg’s Pest Patrol today for a free evaluation!