How to Get Rid of Flies Outdoors | Proven Techniques!

Written by Thomas Matthews | checkbox Reviewed by Articles on Pest Samurai undergo a rigorous evaluation process by our Science Editors. Each article is scrutinized prior to publication and upon significant updates. Learn more about Pest Samurai Editorial Process. Steve Vanatta

It is inconvenient to hear an annoying buzzing sound either inside or outside of your house. The cause of their presence is probably the same but eliminating them outdoors might be more challenging. So, how do you get rid of flies outdoors?

To get rid of flies outside:

  1. Look for the source of fly infestation (food and standing water)
  2. Clean your surroundings to eliminate hidden breeding spaces
  3. Use fly traps, baits, or insecticides to reduce their numbers
  4. Keep garbage cans properly closed and compost away from the house
  5. Regularly inspect outdoors for new sources of fly attractants (small dead animals, pet fences, etc.)

In this article, we’ll discuss the most common fly attractants, the effective products and methods to use in battling fly infestation, and when is best to contact a pest professional.

Why Are There So Many Flies Outside My House?

Why Are There So Many Flies Outside My House

You may have numerous flies outside of your house due to the prevalence of various fly attractants such as decaying organic materials, dead plants and animals, pet feces, and other types of wastes. These insects generally feed on rotten junk and debris, which they will transform into a breeding place for eggs afterward.

They are also attracted to kitchen garbage and compost pits. This means that if you have unsealed trash bins and recycling areas near the outdoor sections of your house, they are most likely to stay near it.

Related: What Is the Purpose of Flies? | Information and Facts

How to Get Rid of Flies Outdoors?

How to get rid of flies outdoors.

1. Look for the source of fly infestation.

Flies are greatly attracted to rotten and decaying organic materials, animal carcasses, pet manure, moisture, and uncovered garbage cans. If these things are present in your backyards or gardens, flies may feed on them or transform them into a breeding place. 

2. Clean your surroundings.

Once you have discovered the source or origin of the infestation, the next thing to do is clean your surroundings, specifically the potential breeding places of flies. This may be accomplished by doing the following actions:

  • Throw away pet feces and droppings.
  • Remove dead and decaying leaves and plants.
  • Dispose of spilled pet food and other unnecessary clutter and waste to its rightful place.
  • Maintain compost pits far from your house.
  • Get rid of containers and receptacles where moisture and stagnant water may accumulate. 

3. Use fly traps, baits, or insecticides.

Insect traps and baits can be effective in controlling flies from swarming around your gardens and outdoor areas. This can be done by strategically placing DIY or ready-made traps in areas that are far from the occupied structures of your homes.

You can employ homemade traps with the use of a cup and old wine, a bottle and vinegar, and a mixture of dishwashing soap, apple cider vinegar, decaying fruits, and wine/fruit juice. These items will attract and lure the flies to enter the containers. Once they are inside, they will have a hard time escaping from them.

Flies naturally repel when they sense the aroma of certain herbs and plants like eucalyptus, mint, lemongrass, citronella, rosemary, cloves, and lavender. You can soak the oils of these items in a piece of cloth and hang them on trees, walls, and branches.

You may also utilize non-toxic insecticides if you want to deter flies in a prompt and fast manner.

4. Light aromatic candles.

Lighting candles with the aromatic scents of basil, lemongrass, cloves, and citrus fruits can also be efficient in repelling flies away from your outdoor spaces. Place these candles in areas where these pests would usually swarm but do not forget to put the fire off if no longer used.

Do Outdoor Fans Keep Flies Away?

Outdoor fans may keep the flies away. The tiny wings and minuscule body structures of these insects cannot maneuver against the strong winds of the fan. Therefore, it prevents them from staying and passing through the areas within the fan’s reach. 

Furthermore, these fans can become more helpful when you attach and place them near your picnic tables, grilling area, and activity grounds. 

What Is the Best Fly Repellent for Outside?

If you want to utilize natural fly repellents, you may opt to use home and kitchen ingredients such as cloves, rosemary, lemongrass, mint, and eucalyptus. Aside from its effectiveness in keeping the flies away, it is also very safe to use as you can apply it in both the indoor and outdoor spaces of your home.

However, if you want a speedy remedy for your fly problems, you can buy commercial fly repellents such as the Bonide Chemical Co Inc 46177 Barn and Stable Concentrate .

Bonide Chemical Co Inc 46177 Barn and Stable Concentrate
  • PROTECTS ANIMALS - Barn & Stable Fly Spray protects horses, beef...
  • BUG KILLER - Our product controls flies, fleas, ticks, spiders,...
  • INDOOR & OUTDOOR USE - Designed for use in barns, swine houses,...
  • LONG-LASTING RESULTS - Barn & Stable Fly Spray's fast-acting...
  • MULTIPLE WAYS TO USE - This versatile formula can be used as a...

It contains permethrin concentrate, a chemical that can effectively slay flies, mosquitoes, mites, gnats, spiders, fleas, ticks, and other insects. Moreover, it guarantees indoor and outdoor use while providing versatility of application as you can utilize it as a fog, mist, or spray component.

Related: How to Get Rid of Blow Flies? | A Complete Guide

How to Get Rid of Flies on Outdoor Plants?

How to Get Rid of Flies on Outdoor Plants

Flies may also swarm around your plants. To prevent these pests from damaging the natural beauty of your foliage, it is recommended to employ the following measures:

  • Remove dead trunks, branches, and leaves as these are considered fly attractants. Never compost or leave them around your outdoor plants.
  • Lessen the use of animal manure and feces in fertilizing your plants as these are part of a fly’s food source.
  • If flies persist in infesting your outdoor plants, you will probably need to use insecticides. However, to ensure the plant’s safety and healthy growth, it would be better to use insecticide soaps or those made from natural ingredients like neem oil. They have a lower level of toxicity and will not cause harm or pollution to the environment.

What Outdoor Plants Keep Flies Away?

The smell and aroma of the following plants will surely keep the flies at bay:

  • Mint
  • Lavender
  • Basil
  • Rosemary
  • Citronella
  • Venus Flytrap
  • Marigold

Not only will they repel and eliminate the swarming of flies, but they will also serve as a beautiful decoration or ornamental piece in your gardens and outdoor yards.

How to Trap Flies Outdoors?

What Repels Flies Outdoors

If you are looking for productive ways of trapping flies outdoors, you may employ the following measures:

Homemade Traps

If you are on a budget and do not want to spend money on purchasing commercial traps, you may make your own DIY fly traps such as the following: 

  • Put old wine in a cup. Flies will sink because of the surface tension of the said beverage once they proceed to it.
  • Place vinegar in a plastic bottle and cut its top part. Once removed, put it in the bottle with the top part pointing downward to form a funnel. This will trap the flies once they decide to enter the bottle.
  • In a bowl, mix overripe fruits, wine, fruit juice, or apple cider vinegar with some drops of dishwashing liquid. This bait will drown and sink the flies when they go through the surface of the mixture.

Fly Paper Traps 

These traps are made from adhesive materials that can capture flies when they dock and land on them. They also contain chemical attractants and pheromones to attract flies and other insects to go near their premises. To increase its effectiveness, it must be hung in the fly-infested spaces of your outdoor area.

TERRO T518 Fly Magnet Sticky Fly Paper Fly Trap, 8 Count (Pack of 1)
  • Attracts and traps flies.
  • No baiting, no odor, no mess
  • Easy-to-use ribbon design
  • Conveniently disposable
  • Includes 8 Fly Paper Tubes

Electric Zappers

These trapping tools have colored lights that can lure the flies to the trail and follow them. Once they reach the source of the light, they will be electrified to death.

No products found.

Electric Fly Swatter

If you want to effortlessly trap flies, you may consider using electric swatters. This is a trapping device in a racket form that can instantly kill flies when it comes in contact with its high-voltage nets. You don’t have to worry if you’re scared of electricity, as these swatters have several layers of mesh to ensure safety and convenience.

mafiti Fly Swatter Electric, Battery Powered Fly Killer Mosquito Zapper Bug Zapper Racket for Indoor Outdoor, Black
  • The fly swatter head is made of high-quality ABS material, which...
  • Powerful and Efficient: The fly swatter has a powerful electric...
  • Safe and Reliable: The fly swatter has a 3-layer safety mesh and...
  • Easy to Use: The fly swatter is simple to use, just hold the...
  • Wide Application: The fly swatter is suitable for living rooms,...

How to Kill Flies Outdoors?

For effortless, instant, and convenient relief from flies outdoors, the following products are recommended:

This electric zapper can instantly kill flies with the use of its 15W bulb and 4200V power grid. It is very portable and handy as it has durable hooks for easy attachment on patios, backyards, porches, and balconies. With its insect collection tray, cleaning and removing fly debris will never be a problem.

No products found.

Mafiti Electric Fly Swatter 

This racket-shaped swatter also employs electricity in exterminating flies. It is very easy to operate as you can just place 2 AA batteries in the battery compartment and press the ability button before swaying it towards the direction of the flies. Other than that, its mesh layers guarantee protection and security from accidental human electrocution.

mafiti Fly Swatter Electric, Battery Powered Fly Killer Mosquito Zapper Bug Zapper Racket for Indoor Outdoor, Black
  • The fly swatter head is made of high-quality ABS material, which...
  • Powerful and Efficient: The fly swatter has a powerful electric...
  • Safe and Reliable: The fly swatter has a 3-layer safety mesh and...
  • Easy to Use: The fly swatter is simple to use, just hold the...
  • Wide Application: The fly swatter is suitable for living rooms,...

Ortho Home Defense Flying Bug Killer 

This insecticide from the Ortho Store is the best choice if you desire immediate relief from flies. Its sodium lauryl sulfate, cinnamon oil, castor oil, geraniol, and other powerful contents are adept at killing insect pests in a matter of a few seconds. Also, it is safe for kids and pets so you can use this product even inside your homes.

Ortho Home Defense Flying Bug Killer with Essential Oils 14 oz.
  • Safe and strong essential oil formula (Safe to use around kids...
  • Safe to use around kids and pets when used as directed
  • Tested and proven to start killing flying bugs in seconds**...
  • Use indoors or outdoors
  • Spray at all angles

How to Keep Flies Away Outdoors?

There are numerous ways of keeping flies away from your outdoor area. It may either be through natural methods such as the use of organic fly repellents and biological predators/natural enemies. You can also use commercial techniques like the utilization of insecticides and electric zappers and swatters.

How to Keep Flies Off Outdoor Cat Food?

To prevent this from happening, make sure to conceal your cat food container with a tight cover when not in use.

Another helpful method is to clean and keep the food bowl after the cat utilizes it. You can also set up fly traps near the cat food but far from the reach of the said animals and humans.

How to Keep Flies Away From an Outdoor Party?

If you are planning to host an outdoor party, but you’re scared that the flies might ruin it, just follow these helpful tips:

  • Clean your surroundings and remove any dead plants, waste, and garbage in your outdoor space.
  • Cover your food and dispose of the trash properly.
  • Place electric fans in areas near the food and visitors’ tables.
  • Use natural fly repellents such as citrus fruits, lavender, and mint as table decorations.
  • Set up diffusers and candles that contain natural fly repellents.

How Do Outdoor Restaurants Keep Flies Away?

Flies can be a complete nuisance when it swarms around you while dining at an outdoor restaurant. To eliminate their presence in an alfresco environment, practice the following strategies:

  • Utilize natural fly repellents such as lavender, basil, citronella, and rosemary as a table ornament.
  • During evenings, igniting a candle with mint, citronella, and lavender content may be helpful in getting rid of flies.
  • Putting a handful of pennies in a glass with water is believed to scare flies away as they will think of coins as big predator bugs.
  • Regularly clean your surroundings to eradicate possible fly attractants.

When to Call a Professional About Your Fly Problem?

If your flight problem becomes so bad and severe, the best thing to do is to call and seek professional help. You will know if your fly issues have progressed vehemently if these insects are already swarming in the different parts of your house or if you are already experiencing symptoms of fly-borne diseases. It is advisable to leave this job in the hands of professional pest handlers as they have the appropriate devices and equipment to kill these insects.

List of Sources

Controlling Houseflies. Texas A&M AgriLife Extension.
Fly Control Measures. (2008). Iowa State University.
Gerry, A. C. (2015). Flies. University of California Agriculture & Natural Resources.

Thomas Matthews
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