One day there’s nothing – the next day it’s like an overall invasion of the fruit flies!
Where are they all coming from?!
Fruit flies, like regular flies, are pests – they are just pests of a smaller size.
And if you have a parrot, there’s a good chance that you will eventually find some fruit flies hanging around.
The bad news is that fruit flies rarely travel single. Rather, they travel in groups.
This means you’re unlikely to find one fruit fly in your parrot’s cage and likely to find an entire swarm (or at least so it seems).
So how can you get rid of these annoying pests?
There are actually several different methods that you can use to keep your parrot cage free of fruit flies. The best method, however, is prevention. The best way to prevent an invasion of fruit flies in your parrots cage is to keep it clean and free of rotting fruit, vegetables, or other foods.
We’ll talk more about preventing and ridding your parrot cage of fruit flies later, but there are many other questions to be asked about fruit flies as well.
What exactly are fruit flies?
Where do they come from?
Do you need to be concerned about your parrot’s health when fruit flies are present?
Today we will answer all of these questions and more so let’s not waste another minute!
What are Fruit Flies?
Fruit flies are teeny tiny little bugs that fly around.
They are only about ⅛ of an inch long, but if you were to look at them under a microscope you would see that they have red eyes and a black and tan body.
Fruit flies are generally attracted to ripened fruit and vegetables which is why they are most commonly found in kitchens, restaurants, supermarkets, or gardens.
They are also often found in drains, garbage disposals, trash containers, and anywhere else that contains food particles – including your parrot’s cage.
The worst part about fruit flies is that they don’t just nibble on your foods, but they also lay their eggs near the surface of fermenting goods – and each fruit fly can lay up to 500 eggs.
It only takes these flies 1 week to complete their entire lifecycle from hatching to adulthood.
Fruit flies often enter the home on fruit that has previously been infested, but they can also enter through doors and windows.
So why are fruit flies attracted to your parrot cage?
It’s simple – because your parrot cage contains droppings of fruits and vegetables that your parrot eats.
As we all know, parrots are messy eaters.
All it takes is one piece of fruit to be left in your parrot’s cage and it can easily attract fruit flies.
Alternatively, if you purchase fruit or vegetables that have already been infested, they can enter your parrot’s cage that way too.
What’s the difference between flies and fruit flies?
The most noticeable difference between a fruit fly and a regular house fly is the size.
Fruit flies are much smaller than house flies.
And while house flies are generally only seen during the spring and summer months, fruit flies are more likely to be spotted year-round.
However, the most important difference between house flies and fruit flies is their ability to spread disease.
House flies breed and feed off of rotten food and garbage and thrive in unsanitary conditions.
For this reason, they are often carriers of disease.
When a fly makes contact with a human or their food, the disease can spread.
Diseases that can be transmitted through a fly include dysentery, typhoid, cholera, eye infections, and certain skin infections including diphtheria and leprosy.
The good news about fruit flies is that, unlike flies, they don’t spread disease.
Yes, they are a nuisance and no one likes to have them around, but they are unlikely to bring any harm to your parrot even if they are hanging out in the cage.
Can fruit flies harm my parrot?
Well, yes and no.
The good news is that fruit flies are not disease vectors.
This means that unlike some other insects like mosquitoes, they don’t transfer disease directly to humans, animals, or our parrots.
They also don’t bite or sting – which is more good news.
Fruit flies can, however, spread bacterial pathogens from food to food, or from food to preparation surfaces.
In other words, they can transfer bacteria like E. Coli, Listeria, and Salmonella from one source of fresh food to another, or from a surface to a piece of food.
For this reason, you want to keep fruit flies away from your parrots’ food and throw out any food that they have come into contact with.
How can I prevent fruit flies from entering my home/parrots cage?
Once fruit flies have entered into your home, they can reproduce very quickly.
This is why we often see a group of fruit flies instead of just one.
For this reason, the best way to keep fruit flies away is to prevent them from entering in the first place.
But how do you do that?
The best prevention for fruit flies is keeping your parrots cage clean and free of food particles.
Avoid leaving fruit or vegetables in your parrots cage for more than a few hours.
Not only can your parrot’s food go rotten and attract fruit flies, but parrots shouldn’t eat food after a few hours of sitting out anyways.
Once your parrot is finished a meal, be sure to clean up the bottom of the cage and around the exterior of the cage.
As we all know, parrots are messy eaters and their food can end up everywhere.
As long as there is no food left laying around once your parrot is finished eating, you shouldn’t attract any fruit flies.
The same rules apply to when you give your parrot juices or liquids.
Don’t leave them sitting for more than a few hours, and clean out any juice bowls once your parrot is finished.
You can also prevent infestations by ensuring that you store your parrots food properly.
Whenever possible, store food in your refrigerator or in tight lid containers.
Avoid purchasing mass amounts of food that will just sit around and only purchase produce as you need it.
This will prevent your produce from overripening, thereby deterring infestations.
Also be sure to clean up spills, remove food from trash cans, and maintain your drains to avoid attracting fruit flies to your home.
How can I get rid of fruit flies in my parrots cage?
Once you have noticed fruit flies within your parrot cage, you need to find and remove the breeding area.
Even if you use insecticides to control the adults within the cage, new flies will continue to infest the cage until the breeding site is eradicated.
Check for old fruits or vegetable droppings within the cage or within the home.
You might also want to check garbage disposals and drains for the main source of the infestation within your house.
Until you have found the breeding location, you will also want to do what you can to get rid of the adult flies.
For this, many people like to use fly strips. Just make sure that you put these strips away from the cage so that your bird does not get stuck on them.
As a home remedy, you could also try mixing vinegar in a shallow dish with a little bit of dishsoap near the cage.
The vinegar is said to attract the flies while the dish soap traps and sticks them.
Warning: Do not use pesticides or other chemicals to clean down your parrots cage and deter fruit flies.
These things can be extremely harmful to parrots if ingested and are not worth the risk to your parrot.
In conclusion, fruit flies are pests but they aren’t going to do much harm to your parrot.
With that being said, they can transfer bacteria, so any food that has been touched with fruit flies should be thrown away immediately.
As for keeping them away from your parrot cage, prevention is the best method. In the case that prevention is not possible, try some of the remedies above until you can search out and eliminate the breeding site.