Both the fruit fly and fungus gnat are rather annoying to me, and unfortunately they are part of the composting system. They are attracted to decomposing and rotting food. So if you are composting with or without worms, you are going to attract these creatures. The upside to these winged creatures is their short life span. Many sites claim they live for a day to a week depending on the temperature and the availability of food. They do reproduce quickly if food is around for them to feast on so it may seem that they live forever. Also, the warmer the weather, the longer the life span and the more they reproduce. The opposite is true for the cooler weather.
Sign: The mantra buzzing around is “Everything in moderation”. This is true for the fruit fly and fungus gnat. You don’t want a herd of these creatures. For example, if you were to open the bin and a swarm rushes out to you and tries to get up your nose and in your mouth, then things need to change in the bin. They are just giving you a sign that you are producing more food scraps than the wigglers can handle. So the decomposing food is very appealing to the wigged creatures, and they will begin to lay their eggs in the food and the wet bedding. A swarm like this will deter your wigglers from coming to the surface to feed on the food scraps.
Solution: There are a few things you can do to rid yourself of a majority of these guys. Once again a few won’t harm your wigglers. and are actually speeding up the composting process. They are more of a nuisance to us, but if you have a swarm try one or all of these methods.
– stop feeding for a week or until the wigglers consume what is left in the bin. In the meantime, the scraps that you are producing can be stored in the freezer.
– burry the food scraps in the bedding so the flies can’t get to them.
– cover the bedding with extra sheets of newspaper.
– add some peat moss, or shredded paper to absorb any extra moisture.
– put the bin outside, over night ,exposed to cooler temperatures.
– buy fly paper
– put some fruit juice with a bit of soap in a bottle. The flies will go in and die….so sorry