With the summer beginning to wane, we are trying to squeeze in as much outdoor time as possible. Once the chaos of school and the myriad of soccer practices (which requires a mom-chauffeur) begin, every minute becomes scheduled. Until then, however, the hinged doors, miraculously transformed into revolving doors, remain a persistent source of eye-rolling from me with every slam of the door. Moreover, it allows nasty flies to enter easily and often.

And why wouldn't they? Their fruit fly friends are chilling on plates of delicious watermelon chunks, uneaten sweet corn and leftover ketchup laden burgers that my kids leave lying around. Full disclosure: I do tell them to clean up their messes but my voice, at this point of the summer, has officially been tuned out. Therefore, adding fly traps are more plausible than getting my kids to listen. #theywin

Fly strips are effective but so gross. I can handle any kind of gory movie but a strip of flypaper, blackened by carcasses, dangling from the kitchen ceiling, causes me to gag. It's akin to vicious Roman rulers who would put the heads of the enemies on spikes to warn other rebels. I mean, fly strips are sooooo medieval. So here are a few ways to capture flies that don't make you look like a crazy, tyrannical, overlord. Or, at least, to only appear as a subtle dictator.

flies on fruit

Salsa Jar Fly Trap

Salsa jars are an effective resource to create a fly trap. With months of impromptu BBQ's, a simple appetizer of chips and salsa is an easy way to seem like a conscious guest and ensure those invitations keep a-flowing. So once you dump the condiment into a pretty bowl, wash it out and use it to trap those flies!


  • Salsa Jar
  • Sugar
  • Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Dish Soap
  • Saran wrap
  • Rubberband
jar fly trap
  • Cover the bottom of the jar, about two inches, with the vinegar and sugar. This acts as the bait.
  • Add a drop or two of the soap. This breaks the surface tension of the mixture so flies drown rather than land.
  • Cover it with a layer of saran wrap then secure it with a rubber band.
  • Use a knife to make small slits into the saran wrap.

The fruit flies will be attracted to sugary goodness, enter the jar through the slits you create, then properly drown.

Soda Bottle Fly Trap

With kids running loose, I've been relaxing on their normally healthy diet and letting them drink soda. Bad mom but, ya know, I can't always pick my battles. One cup of soda as a reward for just being kind has been a great bribing tool!


  • Plastic 2-liter soda bottle
  • Scissors
  • Sugar
  • Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Dish Soap
soda bottle fly trap
  • Cut the top of the bottle about 1/3 of the way down from the spout. This will now be the funnel.
  • Add the same bait as the Salsa Jar Fly Trap: a combination of vinegar and sugar with a few drops of soap into the bigger part of bottle - the basin.
  • Invert the funnel into basin. The doo doo fruit flies will enter into the bottle and will, again, be unable to escape.

Wine Bottle Fly Trap

This is absolutely my favorite trap because it's a great excuse to nearly empty a bottle of wine. "But Honey, I HAVE to drink it all in order to get rid of those annoy flies! It's for the cleanliness of our home!" - Every Mom


  • Wine bottle
  • Piece of looseleaf
  • Tape
wine bottle fly trap

WARNING: The first step probably the hardest step when creating this trap:

  • Leave an inch or two of wine left in the bottle. I know, I know. It seems sacrilege that I would suggest this atrocity BUT it works! The same sweet nectar that attracts you also attracts flies.
  • After you wipe your tears from leaving the last drops of wine, roll a piece of paper into a funnel.
  • Place it inside the bottle.
  • Secure the funnel with tape wrong the mouth of the bottle.
  • Place it into the town square of the fruit fly colony. Stand by as the citizens go down one by one.

We may not be able to get our pesky kids, restless from the summer, to slow down. But we can make sure those pesky flies, most likely abundant because our messy and restless children are also abundant. To not only slow down but to drown. We DO have control over our domain, I swear! There is something satisfying about creating a deathtrap to relieve the summer stressors. Sorry flies - but mama just went to the store and picked up some salsa, soda, and, of course, wine. This is going to be a great Friday night for me but a bad one for you.

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