sarah's own natural garden

updates from our lifestyle block – gardening, chickens, green cleaning and more

Combatting flies without spray

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This summer seems to have been the worst one for flies – everything from big blowies to those annoying ones that hang out in the middle of the room.  I don’t like to spray too much (although we have been resorting to it) – toxins for us to breathe in and settle on the surfaces which need wiping down and now we have a puppy who likes to eat them.  Flies killed with poison can’t be good for him. I’ve tried various methods over the years and am currently trying a couple of products (no I’m not being paid for advertising!)

IMG_9169Shoo away – this is battery powered and has a couple of wing things that spin around and deter flies.  It does a good job of keeping them off the immediate area where I’ve got food – so the kitchen bench or table.  It can be annoyingbecause it takes up more bench space and knocks into my wine glass if not positioned properly but a quick check to see if it’s working by turning it off proves it is really keeping the flies away.  Get recharge batteries but even with running it alot if doesn’t use up much battery life.  I think it or something similar is in hardware stores now but I got mine online.

Death to flies by drowning.  I read about this in our local magazine: Gordy has designed a plastic lid thing which you fit to a bucket. Put offal and water in the bucket – flies go in, can’t get out, drown.  It had some good testimonials. We’ve used something similar years ago  – but it was a one use cylinder pre-loaded with some kind of fly bait.  It grossed me out to see it fill up with dead flies that needed dealing with once full but after a few years on our block I’m more hardy to dead flies, less tolerant to a house full of live ones.  I bought Gordy’s fly trap because I could fit it to an old paint tin or similar or even a plastic bag and I can keep on using it.  I like the idea of the bag because I think I could get rid of the gross bag of dead flies and meat quite easily by putting the whole thing in the bin then just set up another one!

Gordy's fly trap

All I needed to do to assemble it was get one of our left over washed out plastic paint tins, hack a circle in the lid, put the head and bones of a filleted creek snapper in the bucket, cover it with water and sit the trap fitting over the hole in the lid.

Pretty simple really.  I got the bucket ready yesterday but it wasn’t until last night that fish filleting was done.   While not technically ‘fish offal’ as per instructions I was pretty sure it would still attract flies.  The next morning I covered the carcass with water.   The instructions said three litres but I needed more than that to cover it – apparently I shouldn’t have the meat sitting out of the water because flies could just lay eggs on the exposed meat and maggots would form – negating the whole process.  (I could have cut up the fish to make it lie lower but after a night of it sitting in the bucket the smell was hurrying me along).  I sat the lid on top and returned tonight to a bucket with half a dozen flies dead on the surface.

While that may not sound like alot the reason I checked on it tonight and took a photo is that while cooking dinner I suddenly thought – there doesn’t seem to be so many flies.  I’m expecting great things from this trap.  Hopefully it catches alot of flies before I need to deal with the inevitable – what do I do with a bucket full of dead flies and very well decayed fish?






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