Compost offers flies a reliable source of food and a comfortable environment to lay and hatch their eggs. The bothersome insects not only cause a nuisance in the home, but they also act as carriers of pathogens that can affect both people and animals. If you keep your compost in good condition, flies won’t be drawn to it and the diseases they carry won’t be transmitted.
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Are flies in compost good or bad?
Flies in compost are beneficial because they hasten the decomposition of organic matter in your compost along with other microbes. However, according to gardening leaves not all fly species are beneficial. The yeast from developing fruit attracts vinegar flies, which are preferable to houseflies.
Black soldier flies and vinegar flies contribute to the decomposition process. But since they lay eggs and breed incredibly quickly, a fly infestation in your compost calls for immediate action.
What is really up with all the flies in my compost bin?
If proper compost pile management is not implemented, your compost bin will draw a lot of flies. These are the causes of flies in your compost bin:
Rainwater flowing through the compost
Dry compost does not appeal to flies. Although water is necessary for temperature control and compost digestion, too much rain can harm your compost. Aggie Horticulture College Station claims that compost moisture levels over 60% inhibit aerobic breakdown and encourage anaerobic microbes.
Rainwater ferments the compost materials, producing carbon dioxide byproducts that draw fruit flies and filth flies. On the rotting fruit and other organic debris in your compost, the flies will soon reproduce and grow in number.
Lack of the natural predators of the fly
Additionally, flies have innate predators. There must not be any frogs, spiders, or birds nearby your compost bin if there are a lot of flies coming inside from the outside. At various points of their life cycles, other predators eat on flies. For instance, several parasites and parasitoids are potent predators of fly eggs, larvae, and pupae.
Piling of waste
Another major factor contributing to fly infestation in compost is piling debris without a comprehensive waste management plan. In your compost bin or worm bin, flies will be attracted by the simple act of piling trash, which increases fly food, temperature changes, and uneven decomposing. It also makes water contamination and the spread of infectious illnesses more likely.
How to prevent and eliminate compost flies
In addition to preventing flies, a well-kept compost will ensure that your yard is free of unpleasant odours.
Here are some techniques for eliminating and managing compost flies:
Put a lid on the compost bin and tighten it: Make sure your compost bin has a lid. After removing each waste item, close it tightly. The eggs and maggots within the bin won’t survive the heat, and your compost won’t produce any new flies. Additionally, a lid keeps rains from soaking into your compost.
Every day, rake the compost pile: Because they can find food and an ideal temperature for egg laying, flies are a typical sight in compost.
The larvae and maggots in the compost will die from desiccation if you rake and turn it every day. Rake only once or twice a week when the compost dries and the flies leave.
Use a layer of fine mulch or brown stuff to cover food scraps: If you don’t have a lid, you can prevent flies from getting to new waste by covering it with fine mulch. After every disposal, you might cover the food leftovers with brown materials like straws, dry leaves, wood chips, or sawdust.