Fleas and Fly Pests and why you need to deal with the problem. Fleas don’t fly – they jump. Flies fly. But both of these small pests can cause at the least discomfort, sometimes illness, and in the case of flies, it can be life-threatening.
Rental properties, hotels, guest houses don’t want flea infestations. The cost to reputation far outweighs treatment and prevention.
Premises that aren’t vacuumed or cleaned are more likely to provide a better environment for fleas to thrive but they will also infest clean places in their search for a warm-blooded host.
Fleas ‘live’ on their host – cats, dogs, birds and even people. But around 95% of flea eggs, larvae and pupae live in the environment, not on pets. As flea eggs can survive dormant for long periods of time, sometimes up to 18 months, it’s more than possible that the infestation outbreak was laid down some time before.
How to recognise if you have a problem with Fleas
Pets constantly scratching, licking or biting themselves are a good indicator
Seeing fleas or flea droppings in the coat of your pet (easily spotted in light-coloured animals by brushing back the hair, in dark coated breeds it may be better to comb the animal over a sheet of paper)
Bites on a person, usually around ankles and legs
And the most obvious sign of a flea infestation? Seeing them – fleas can often be spotted jumping around on soft furnishings.
Professional treatment for infestations is by far the most effective course of action. By using the correct insecticides carefully applied to all floor surfaces and left to work for up to 2 weeks will prevent proper completion of the flea life cycle, from larvae to the adult stage. The pest controllers will also use a conventional insecticide to kill the adult fleas.
Flies including Bluebottles and Clusters Flies
Flies can bite too. But most sub species of fly feed through vomiting saliva onto the surface of food and sucking up the resulting liquid. Through this the fly will contaminate the food with bacteria and can cause food poisoning and even worse. Flies also carry the eggs of parasitic worms. There is absolutely nothing to recommend any type of fly as a welcome guest in any premises.
Obviously complete and thorough management of food preparation, storage and disposal of waste will help to keep flies at bay but a regular visit from a Pest Professional using the right equipment and sharing the right advice will help to keep the problem at bay.
Bluebottles are one of the larger types of fly and are a prodigious breeder. One Bluebottle can lay up to 600 eggs, which in warm weather will hatch in under 48 hours and produce maggots which can become fully developed in a week. These maggots burrow into meat or carrion as they feed on it, and then pupate, often in loose soil, for about ten days before emerging as adult flies from the brown pupal case.
Bluebottles, like other flies, are often found on refuse tips, rotting animal matter, dirt and dustbins. They commute from filth to food and carry bacteria on their legs, feet and bodies.
We often get calls out to householders during nesting season when a nest may have fallen down a chimney or similar and the bluebottle has found the rotting eggs or fledglings and settled in for a tasty feast and breeding spot.
These are dark greyish flies about 8mm long with yellowish hairs on the back and with overlapping wings. In autumn they congregate in large numbers in upper rooms or roof spaces of houses to hibernate. They will then reemerge in Spring to seek out egg laying sites outside. A mass of cluster flies has a characteristic smell. They are sluggish in flight and are a nuisance in the house. The larvae of one species are parasitic upon certain earthworms, so this species is more common in rural areas.
Cluster flies can often most easily be removed with a vacuum cleaner. Aerosol fly killers deal with smaller numbers. Pest control contractors may use insecticidal fogs or smoke generators to clear heavy infestations. Cluster flies may return to the same location year after year.