flies, flies, flies!

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by 4chickens, Aug 29, 2008.

  1. 4chickens

    4chickens Hatching

    Jun 2, 2008
    We have flies everywhere in our fairly large suburban backyard--help!

    We have four chickens who are in a cage inside our house from dusk until about 10AM. The rest of the time they are outside in the backyard: in the dirt under bushes, sometimes in their dirt-floored predator-wire enclosed outdoor cage (about 2'wide by 9' long), sometimes walking on the backyard cement.

    Every night when we bring the chickens inside we rake the dirt inside the cage, the area outside the cage that they spend most of their time in and the cement, then we put the poop and leaves that we've raked-up in a compost bin.

    Still, there are flies everywhere in our backyard.

    What are we doing wrong? Why do we have so many flies and how can we get rid of them?

    (We're in N. California-- valley--very dry, hot during daytime, cool at night. Area chickens in is dry, rest of yard is being watered.)
  2. thewarriorchild

    thewarriorchild Songster

    Mar 29, 2008
    Ringwood area, NJ
    Did this just start from getting chickens? I bet there is another cause. We have a TON of flies this year oddly enough IN the house! I can NOT figure out where they are coming from! We were away for 3 weeks and we came back to like 15-20 of them. Our house is not dirty from the animals and if they make a mess it is cleaned... I do not get it! They must be coming from outside? We had a flooding problem and the door thingie on the bottom is removed and there are flies in the garage also so they must be getting in that way. I dunno, but fly tape helps we can get it here in the $ store. I put it up in our coop.
  3. 4chickens

    4chickens Hatching

    Jun 2, 2008
    I should say that a person working at a local feed store said that the flies are much worse this year (in N. California).

    Websites I've read, like this one http://ohioline.osu.edu/b853/index.html, say (if I've got it correctly) that flies need to lay eggs on something that is WET and HIGH-PROTEIN, like chicken poop. The eggs hatch (?) into larvae, the larvae then crawl to a DRY area, go into their hard-shelled pupa-form and then turn into flies.

    The chickens are in a dry dirt area and I think we're able to pick-up most of the poop, so I don't see how we have the necessary conditions for hatching a lot of flies: wet, high-protein.

    To previous posting: I would think that you're right that they're coming in through the break in the door and laying eggs in the moist area.

    I tried fly tape and it didn't work. We have three liquid pheromone (to attract the flies)/poison (to kill them!) containers that get filled with flies every few days--and don't really put a dent in the fly population.
  4. Lea71

    Lea71 Songster

    Thank goodness it's not just me....yeah...the flies are horrid this year! [​IMG] Makes it almost unbearable to go outside...they are just all over anything that breathes. I've become the door police...barking at the DH and kids to go in and out quickly...flies in the house drive me nuts. :mad:
  5. We have a bunch this week. I know why they are here, because of the neighboring house. (yes, I'm positive). They will go away if they have nothing to feed/lay on. Just keep up with it and they will go on. I got a bug zapper and they get zapped all day long by my doors (outside). Now there's a local crow who will swoop down and clean up the fly carcasses when he notices em.
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2008
  6. JennsPeeps

    JennsPeeps Rhymes with 'henn'

    Jun 14, 2008
    South Puget Sound
    Add some diatomaceous earth (DE) to your feed, put it where they're dust bathing, and sprinkle it around the coop & run. DE will kill the flies. It has helped a lot at my house.

    Only use food grade DE. Other types are harmful. You can buy DE online or from some feed stores. BYC user spatcher also sells it.
  7. angels4

    angels4 Songster

    I use a gallon industrial pump spayer filled with a gallon of water, 1/2 cup citronella oil, 1/4 cup tea tree oil and spray the yard, the porch, and the front of the house (by all door openings) and this works just great for the flies and added bonus here in New England is it allows us to sit outside later into the evening as it controls the mosquitos, plus it make the yard smell nice and citrus like. Really, give it a try. Bet you will be suprised.
  8. Those new enviro friendly fly traps that use an attractant to get them into the sticky tape are amazing. I have them in my house and in a few weeks they are solid with flies. They will last and attract for 3 months but this year they don't get the chance.

    I don't think it has anything to do with your chickens.
  9. Jenski

    Jenski Songster

    Jun 17, 2008
    Middle Tennessee
    No, we have a ton this year too (mid-TN). Must be El Nino! [​IMG]

    There are several threads on fly control - I am using a combination of DE, fly tapes (nasty but work WELL), and our home made vinegar-sugar bottles (not nearly so nasty but also work very well).

    Doesn't get 'em all, but it sure helps. I have tried to stay very proactive with fly control, as these buggers carry all sorts of undesirable things with them. Just keep on it. Good luck!
  10. 4chickens

    4chickens Hatching

    Jun 2, 2008
    We've lived here for 12 years and had flies for the first time within a week of having the chickens in an outdoor cage: the presence of the chickens--or their poop--is bringing the flies to the yard.

    I'll try the various suggestions so far--thank you.

    Jenski, can you describe the vinegar-sugar bottles you make--size and percentages sugar & vinegar?

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