Monday, October 7, 2019

RATS--I'VE GOT GNATS


It has been a while since I have run an FYI (For Your Information) post.  So this will be my Fall FYI. Hope you don't ever need it but if you do, feel free to use.

Luckily, I have lived 80 years without this problem in my house. I had the first gnat ever try to fly up my nose the other day.  Occasionally I was seeing tiny black specks zipping about but I honestly thought they were just floaters in my eye.

Now imagine this as the size of a pencil point. 

Then when I partially inhaled one I felt I needed to do something. My lungs can't handle being an insect graveyard so I hit Google.  There  was a lot of info on the tiny critters.  It really is hard to imagine life before Google.

Now whether I had gnats or fruit flies, I don't know for sure but as I checked around I realized I had a bunch of the beggars.

They are really fast. You can think you have swatted one but somehow they escape. They are so light that the breeze caused by the swat displaces them. After deciding I didn't really need an exterminator, I decided to try a gnat/fruit fly trap. 

Years ago before the magic anti-flea pills were invented, there was and still is a gadget called the Happy Jack Flea Trap.  They worked marvelously and since the gnat trap worked on a similar principal, I went with it. 

You can buy the gnat traps but you can also make one with what you probably all ready have in your home.  First put some apple cider vinegar in a low sided bowl then add a little dish soap to break the surface tension so that when the gnat goes for a sip, he will slip to the bottom of the dish and drown. Quick and humane---I hope since catch and release wasn't an option.

Not sure I would have equal success but the price was right and boy did it work. I set it on my counter and watched in amazement.


I managed to drown 18 in about half a day.  Before I finished the day out, I had dispatched 26.   I discarded that soup and set another one out but so far have only caught 3 more in 3 days.  No more surprises up my nose. Unless there is a hatching, I may be in the clear.

Now I really hope you go 80 years like me before you run into this pest in your house but if you do, you now know a simple, non-toxic way to eliminate them.

You are welcome.

50 comments :

  1. Brilliant! I wonder if it would work with tiny ants that invade my house each spring.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Out to pasture,
      I think sugar and borax is recommended for ants. For the sake of my cat, I usually just use the ant traps from the store as they really work well.

      Delete
  2. And the little stinkers bite and are small enough to get through screens!
    Thanks for this. It should be handy next summer.

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    Replies
    1. smartcat,
      Yikes, didn't know about that biting thing. Sure glad I got rid of them before they started nibbling.

      Delete
  3. Interesting how simple things can work so good. And I agree, I don't to go back to a pre-google era. It makes life so much easier.

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    1. Jean,
      I know, you can find out how to fix a toilet, change your car oil or drown gnats with just a mouse click. It is wonderful.

      Delete
  4. I learned from another blogger a few years back about this little trick. And it works! Glad you have dispatched those little buggers, Patti. :-)

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    Replies
    1. Djan,
      So glad you were all ready on to the trick. I am extra glad now that I hear they can bite.

      Delete
  5. Good tip - hope I never need it. Were they gnats or fruit flies? Right now I am finding stink bugs. Gross!! I opened my patio umbrella and one fell on my head! Eeew!!

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    Replies
    1. Don't like to get into someone else's conversation, but just know stink bugs are a lot bigger than gnats and are lethal in their own way. I've had them land on me in bed and you know it when they get on you. I call them aliens because they are strange
      looking.

      Delete
    2. Peggy,
      Yikes, that is purely disgusting. I am not sure I have had stink bugs but when I grew squash, the squash bug is his twin only a bit smaller. Both disgusting critters.

      Delete
  6. I will remember this if those gnasty gnats ever invade here. We tend to get Argentine ants, and they are true beasts to contend with as well.

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    Replies
    1. robin,
      Not sure I have seen an Argentine ant and frankly hope I don't. Don't you love imported pests? Like we don't have enough of our own. Gad, that sounded a little Trumpian. Sorry bout that.

      Delete
  7. The gnats have been horrible this year. Haven't had any in the house, but outdoors they fly in swarms and won't leave you alone. They are vicious for such tiny creatures. With the cool weather coming they soon will all be gone for another year. If I ever get any in the house I will try this.

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    Replies
    1. Snickelfritz,
      I am praying for cold weather for many reason, pests are one of them. I can't imagine sleeping with a stink bug. Mercy.

      Delete
  8. Great tip! My brother has issues with fruit flies especially and he uses this. I'll have to check my cupboard for cider vinegar.

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    Replies
    1. Eileen,
      Wouldn't hurt. Especially since your brother also knows how well it works.

      Delete
  9. I have used this for fruit flies with success so I'll just add to your endorsement.

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    Replies
    1. Olga,
      Thanks for the reinforcement for the gnat cure. Amazing how cheap and easy it was.

      Delete
  10. When I buy fresh produce from a farmer's market we end up with fruit flies in the house (I have found dead ones in the fridge & see 'em flying around). This is an old 'trick' my mom used and it DOES work. At least for that time.

    "Catch & release"...what a hoot!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Annie,
      So glad to hear you have had success with it also. Simple and true.
      So glad you caught "catch and release."

      Delete
  11. I have gotten them from plants, too--fungus gnats I think they're called. Same traps work on those, too. Annoying teeny, tiny buggers! ;)

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    Replies
    1. Rita,
      Yes, they have different forms but all are annoying and I think all respond to the trap.

      Delete
  12. Thanks for this. Every autumn we are pestered with fruit flies. I am off to buy some cider vinegar.

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    Replies
    1. Fun60,
      Never hurts to have it on hand. It works for sure. I plan to restock.

      Delete
  13. Heeeey! What the heck! That happened to me a few days ago. It's the first time it actually went up my nose. Sheesh! I hope I snorted it out. But I don't know for sure. Thank you very much for this, Patti! I will try it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Kay,
      Isn't that such a shock. You are breathing normally when suddenly a tiny critter flies up your nose. That will wake you up. Give it a shot so we don't have to buy screens for our noses.

      Delete
  14. You are so right. What did we do before Google -- ask our mother or grandmother, I guess. Now that I know the solution, I hope I won't need it.

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    1. Barbara,
      Know what you mean. Now days, being the oldest, I would have been the one to ask if there wasn't Google. Love it.

      Delete
  15. Tried those trap things for fruit flies with less success. The electric swatter works well on them.

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    1. joeh,
      Sorry the vinegar didn't work for you. I have a couple of those electric swatters but mine are the size of tennis rackets and my kitchen is small. Plus with the dish, I just watch them drop in.

      Delete
  16. I just might have need of this information. We seem to have fruit flies buzzing about. Thanks.

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    Replies
    1. Linda,
      Give it a shot. It really takes care of the problem and is low energy.

      Delete
  17. I get a tiny moth type bug here that I call drain flies, black and with round wings, super fast and excellent at hiding. Maybe they are a type of gnat and will fall for the apple cider trick. They're seasonal and I had so few this year.

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    Replies
    1. River,
      Yep, drain flies are in the same group. They are seeking water but I think they will also fall for the trap. Give it a shot.

      Delete
  18. First, I am 83! So Hi!!!

    I've had fruit flies, which are about the same thing. I dip the rim of a glass, in water and then sugar or salt. Thus coating the top. Add some sweet wine to the bottom. They are attracted, go in for a drink, can not climb back up the glass and over the coated rim. -smile-

    Same principle!

    I monitor fresh fruit/veggies, so as not to let any get "soft" and ready to breed fruit flies.

    It does seem, as if they come "out" of the old fruit. But maybe they are just attracted. Who cares? Just want to get rid of them.

    🍂🍁🎃🍁🍂

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. wisp of words,
      Welcome to the New Sixty and thank you for commenting. Might try the glass with salt but since I don't drink I will have to stick to the vinegar.
      Thank you so much for leaving comments on 8 of my posts. Amazing! I'm sure some have read more than one post from time to time but no one has commented on 8 in one day. Wow. Thank you!!!

      Delete
  19. Dear Patti, thanks for the info. I'm not aware of gnats, but oh Missouri really has ants--of all sizes and colors. Any suggestions for that???? Peace.

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    1. Dee,
      Everything I have seen suggests sugar and borax for ants but if you have pets, I would get the contained ant baits. They do work.

      Delete
  20. This is great advice and I am definitely going to try it, because we do get this problem occasionally. So how can you really tell the difference between a gnat and a fruit fly? And what makes them different? Curious. Thanks for this!

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    1. Gracie and Bobbi,
      I am not sure how you tell the difference as there are many types of gnats. They are so tiny I can't tell but I have heard this trap works for both several.

      Delete
  21. In the past, I've tried to bring some of my container plants inside when weather turns colder and have had a hatching of gnats that then affect my houseplants. I think I've finally learned my lesson, though I don't like seeing my beautiful container plants succumb to frost in September. There's nothing like having gnats flying into the light on your Kindle when you're trying to read in bed. Thanks for the tip. I did something with petroleum jelly spread on an index card and stuck into the container - messy but effective. Of course I got the idea on Google.

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    Replies
    1. Barb,
      Think they call them fungus gnats. Yes, they are annoying as can be and so glad Google came to the rescue. Love Google. It's a doctor, lawyer, cook and great for general knowledge or repair. I'd be lost with out it.

      Delete
  22. Patti, I've got a new blog (welcometosimple.blogspot.com). I hope you'll pop over to visit me. B

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    1. Barbara,
      Thanks, I'll skip over there as soon as I finish here.

      Delete
  23. WOW and thank you so very much.

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    1. Mage,
      Hope you don't ever need it but if you do, you now know how to fix the problem.

      Delete
  24. Thank you SO MUCH. I'm not sure if what I have are gnats but I will certainly try your suggestion. I love the old solutions that still work today.

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    1. Ginnie,
      Me too. I do believe in simple and time worn.

      Delete
  25. And here I am again, Patti!!!!! -smile- I love blogging, and so... I love reading and commenting too.

    Re: Your comment in my blog. Glad you agree with me! That book cover, of the lone wolf, howling at the street lights, really caught me.

    As I said, I didn't read the whole book. But enjoyed, his lovely descriptions of nature. He paints pictures, with words. And enjoyed some interesting new-to-me facts.

    🍂🍂🍂🍂🍂

    ReplyDelete

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