Like many common pests, ants and flies are drawn to areas where they are likely to find a food source – which can become problematic for your kitchens at this time of year. Crumbs of sugary food, seeds and grains are all enjoyed by these hungry insects, and the sink is yet another inviting place for them to visit. Getting rid of ants and flies in your property for good is no easy task, but there are a few remedies you can try.
How to get rid of flies in homes
Speaking exclusively to Express.co.uk, Jordan Foster, pest control expert at Fantastic Pest Control, explained: “As autumn approaches and the temperatures begin to drop, flies start to seek out warmth in our homes.
“Summer is, however, the peak time for infestations since they are most active and reproduce rapidly during this period.
“Garbage, filth, and waste organic matter are the main things that attract house flies. They eat pretty much everything out of your waste bin, including rotting organics and food scraps. Sweet or fermented liquids attract flies, such as expired juice, spilled juice, and rotten fruit.
“A homemade fly trap is an excellent alternative to store-bought ones. You’ll need something sweet and something sticky or tricky for most traps.”
The first trap Jordan shared involves a jam jar and the bottom of a plastic bottle and is “easy to make”.
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The expert instructed: “Fill the jar with sugar, water or juice, then place the bottle’s lid inside so the mouth points to the liquid.
“Through the small hole in the bottle, flies can get inside, but they can’t get out. Eventually, they drown.”
The second option uses a mixture of apple cider vinegar and a sweet ingredient.
Jordan said: “Mix apple cider vinegar, sugar, and sweet-scented dish soap in a shallow bowl. They’re attracted to sugar and sweet aroma, but when they drink it, they die.
“Like some smells attract flies, some repel them. Fortunately, some of the scents they hate are ones people like. They hate clean, fresh, and intense aromas – lemongrass, peppermint, lavender, eucalyptus, citronella.”
Combine a few drops with water and spray around the house or use air fresheners with one of the mentioned plants. Place near the area where you see flies.
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Jordan added: “The trap works by attracting flies and killing them as soon as they come in contact with it instantly.”
Adam Juson, co-founder of pest control company, Merlin Environmental, agreed on using the vinegar trap to get rid of flies.
He told Express.co.uk: “For fruit flies, create a natural trap using cider vinegar and dish soap. Mix the apple cider vinegar and a few drops of soap in a glass, cover with plastic wrap and poke holes in the top.
“The flies will be attracted to the vinegar because it resembles fermenting fruit, but the dish soap will cause the flies to sink.”
Once homeowners have got ridden of the flies, it is suggested to keep the home clean to avoid another infestation.
Adam said: “Flies can be a nightmare but by keeping your house clean and free from exposed food and accessible waste they will generally move on. Ultimately flies are mostly looking for food sources in which to lay eggs.”
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How to get rid of ants in homes
As the weather starts to warm, the UK will inevitably see more ants and unfortunately, for many, that means a home invasion.
In the summer months, ants become more active as they mate and start to build nests.
Adam advised: “The first step is to wipe down all surfaces, remove any open food packets and place food into airtight containers.
“Any food packets that aren’t properly sealed or a dog food bowl that’s left with scraps in will become a banquet for ants.
“As soon as you discover an infestation, you need to take action immediately. If you’ve only seen a few ants, there are a variety of natural remedies that can help you get rid of ants both inside and outside your home.”
Both experts suggested using boric acid to repel ants.
Jordan explained: “You can get rid of house ants with boric acid. You can spread the acid around the ant entry points, and it will repel them, so they won’t cross it and stay away from your home.”
The expert noted that chalk “works the same way”. To use it, draw chalk around cracks, under doors, near windows, or wherever you see ants.
Homeowners can even use talcum powder to keep these pests at bay. Jordan said: “Ants won’t get through it. Besides, talcum and baby powder are safer for pets and kids.”
To use this method, pour out the powder around entry points to the home high enough for ants not to cross it.
Even a method so simple as pouring boiling water over an ants nest will get rid of them, according to Adam.