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Drain FlyDrain Flies

Order: Diptera
Family: Psychodidae
Scientific Name: Various, Psychoda spp. and Telmatoscopus spp.
Color: Yellow to brown /black
Legs: Six
Shape: Cylindrical
Size: Adults range in size from 1/16 to inch
Antennae: Yes
Flight: Yes, although poor

Also called moth flies, sewer flies or filter flies these true flies have bodies and wings covered with numerous Their life cycle is 7 to 20 days. Adult flies have the body and wings covered with dense, long hairs. If crushed they leave a powdery smudge. Their life cycle is 7 to 20 days.

Drain flies or moth flies can become an annoyance when they breed in liquids in drains,dirty garbage containers and other organic debris areas. They become a problem when they reach large numbers. Adult flies are poor fliers and are more active at night. Adults feed on nectar and polluted water.

Drain flies, or moth flies, can be found in moist, highly organic debris areas such as sink drains, sewage treatment facilities, storm drains, dung and rotten vegetation. They may be common in laundry and floor drains, toilet and shower drains. Floor drains, overflow cuts in sinks and tubs, sump pump pits and sewers can accumulate organic matter but often do not receive enough water to flush the waste down the drain. During daylight, adults will often be found resting on walls near drains. Adults live about two weeks.

Most moth flies are harmless to humans, though they may transmit bacteria and other microorganisms from their breeding sites to areas where people are. Moth flies do not bite.

Finding the sources of breeding and eliminating them is the best control. Control varies with the origin of the moth fly infestation. The most economical and sanitary way is to remove the organic material in which they breed. This requires cleaning sinks, drain pipes, and traps with a stiff wire brush or by steam. Some control of the maggots can be obtained by flushing infested drains with a caustic household cleaner, or by running the hot water down the drain for a period of time. To determine which drain is infested, place a jar over the outlet or tape a plastic bag over the opening of the overflow outlet. Check the container at intervals for adult flies.

(Source: National Pest Management Association, et. al.)