How To Kill Flies

First, Kudos to Twin Cites Kare 11 News for having a weekly spot called “Simply Science.” For the last few years media outlest have been dropping science spots, features, sections, or segments. It is nice to see one added.

And now on to the flies. A Minnesota company called Ecolab, features on Kare 11, has device that kills flies. There is a smell that attracts females that humans supposedly “can’t really smell” (we’ll see about that). Males hang around because of the females, of course. Flies are also attracted to slightly shiny things (the original “Ooo Shiney” then you die effect) and they like the color black (makes sense, they seem to always dress in black). So, the Ecolab device looks like a black shiny TV but it is actually a surface covered with a fly-killing substance. The flies show up, hand around, get the poison on them, then die. Here’s a video demonstration:

Comments

  1. #1 Uncle Glenny
    August 2, 2012

    Too late.

    I had a housefly outbreak 2 days ago (apparently a rotten onion in the vegetable bin); woke up and the living room & kitchen were full of them. I vacuumed them up as they congregated at the front window then gave them a chaser of some carpet deodorizer.

    It’s pretty effective at getting them and leaves no carcasses.

  2. #2 Greg Laden
    August 2, 2012

    Until they break out of the vacuum cleaner in the middle of the night…..

    One way to avoid that is to vacuum up a bunch of spiders too.

  3. #3 Uncle Glenny
    August 2, 2012

    Doesn’t seem to have happened. I left the hose and tubes on, so they would have had a long journey out, and I figured they were battered by the trip and other debris and the baking soda might clog up there breathing thingums.

  4. #4 Amoeba
    August 3, 2012

    Surely, if you’ve got spiders, you’ve got spider food. So vacuuming spiders is probably not a good idea.

    I can’t recall where I heard it, but the rough ride through a vacuum-cleaner is likely fatal for many invertebrates. The risk probably varies, tough ones like small beetles might well survive unscathed.

  5. #5 Ian Kemmish
    August 3, 2012

    Our local garden centre sells venus fly traps. Not only do they do the job, but they clear up the remains (would you want to eat off the table in that video?), and probably get children interested in science too.

  6. #6 Jockaira
    August 3, 2012

    Verrry Interrresting…Would this work on my in-laws?