Blow files, also known as calliphoridae or carrion flies, are an insect family that lives in the Diptera order. Since the blow fly is a polyphyletic (meaning that they are of many different races), there is a great deal of dispute as to how each individual species should be treated. There are over 1,000 known species of blow fly currently alive on the planet.

Blow flies are not limited to any one geographical location, as they are found anywhere in the world. The adult blow fly is usually shiny in appearance, with a metallic coloration. Their thorax and abdomen experience a variety of coloring, as these areas will either be black, green or blue.

A blow fly has an antenna with several different segments. They are a small insect, as adults typically top out at 14 millimeters in length. The mouth part of a blow fly is quite blunt and blow flies do not bite people.

About Blow Flies

The life span of a blow fly ranges depending on its specific environmental factors. A female blow fly's life span tends to fall somewhere between two and eight weeks. Blow flies have to be on alert for a large group of predators, including chickens, spiders, frogs and beetles. Since they are unable to fight off these predators, blow flies attempt to remain in hiding.

Certain species of blow fly survive longest in room temperature. Other species burrow into the ground and make their home there, making it extremely difficult to notice an infestation. The growth and sustenance of the blow fly is almost entirely dependent on the particulars of their environment.

Blow Fly Habitats and Feeding Habits

The habits of the blow fly closely resemble those of the common household fly. The adult blow fly is not a picky eater, but tends to favor the larvae of certain species most of all. Scavenger species that feed on dung to survive are a preferred of the blow fly. An adult blow fly will lay their larvae on dead animal carcasses so that their progeny can enjoy a meal of dead flesh.

Other species of blow fly infest themselves in wounds or sores on animals that are still alive. Some of the larvae are able to save the animal from infection by naturally producing allantoin and stripping away the dead flesh. Blow fly larvae were actually used during wars in order to get rid of all decaying tissues and stunt the growth of bacteria.

During the winter months, blow flies seek shelter. Attics and other neglected, enclosed spaces are common breeding grounds for massive clusters of the insect. They are able to survive anywhere in the world, due to their ability to burrow and find shelter in unexpected places.

Since they are able to move quickly and aren't instantly noticeable to the naked eye, they will often make their way into a home without being detected. When an infestation is particularly severe, any unattended animals are at risk. A particularly large group of blow flies can be fatal for pets.

Once blow flies have located a suitable living area or place to feed, they will multiply quickly, which makes a quick eradication necessary for long term health. While the skin of animals is susceptible, blow flies can also infest themselves in the wounds of humans and make their home there.

Hibernation and Reproduction

The female blow fly is quite busy during her short life, laying thousands of eggs in just two to eight weeks. Each batch that she lays will include at least 150 eggs and as many as 200. Out of these eggs, the ratio to males and females is almost completely even. However, there are certain species that only produce male or female offspring.

When a blow fly hatches from an egg and enters the larvae stage, this process takes place in less than 24 hours. They have three development stages and are able to feed themselves once they've located a proper food source by using their mouth hooks and naturally produced enzymes.

With the proper temperature, blow flies can grow and breed rapidly. Certain species of blow fly prefer room temperatures during their reproduction phase, while others require hotter temperatures for prime reproductive conditions.

Blow flies do not survive well in colder, winter conditions. As a result they will typically head for warmer climates or find a hiding place to survive the winter months. They prefer drier places and will burrow into the soil to make their home until it becomes warm again. Once the temperatures rise again, males emerge from the ground fully resuscitated and ready to continue the mating process.

For this reason, it is important that homeowners are aware that simply waiting for the weather to turn is not enough of a strategy for removing blow flies from their property. Unless they are fully eliminated before the winter months take place, they will return in the spring, in far greater numbers than before. They are also known for making their way into homes to wait out the winter.

Controlling Blow Flies

Blow flies are a common issue in many households and can be very difficult to remove from the domicile once they have found a comfortable hiding place. Alliance Pest Services is your one stop shop for pest eradication and lasting results. If you are experiencing an infestation, call as soon as possible, so that you can restore your home to its normal state of cleanliness.