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How To Control Mayflies


If you like enjoying the great outdoors for a picnic or swimming at the local lake there can be a few annoyances that can get in the way of a good time. One such annoyance is the Mayfly. Whether you’re taking a walk around the lake with a loved one, enjoying a barbecue or trying to go fishing, these little flying irritants can put a damper on the perfect experience as those popular areas are also popular areas for Mayflies to gather. Luckily they don’t bite or attack humans but a large swarm of them can be difficult to deal with and in some cases frightening.

There are ways that these bugs can be overcome and we here at Solutions Pest and Lawn know just how to tackle them and what the best products are to control them. Read below to learn a little about the mayfly and the best tips and products for mayfly control.

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Mayfly Background Information

Mayflies are aquatic insects which belong to the Ephemeroptera order, the same as dragonflies and damselflies. There are at least 3,000 species of mayfly found across the world. They frequent around bodies of water and in their adulthood their only objective is to mate and lay eggs, which only lasts a few hours before they die off.

Mayflies are also popularly known as shadflies or lakeflies. The mayfly has four wings with three long hair-like appendages which extend out from their abdomen, making it their distinguishing characteristic which separates them from other similar insects. When resting, adult mayflies hold their two pairs of large membranous wings folded vertically above their abdomens.

Mayflies develop in ponds, lakes and rivers. While they are a pesky pest, in the aquatic ecosystem they play an important role as a food source for many aquatic animals like fish, frogs and other water-based insects. In fact, there are fishermen who use fake mayfly larvae and adults to try and catch trout.

Mayfly eggs are deposited in water and once hatched, the nymphs live at the bottom of the stream, pond or lake where they feed on small aquatic plants, animals and organic material. Typically, mayflies produce one generation annually and the adults of a particular species emerge in large numbers at the same time. On occasion, the emerging swarms of mayflies are so large that after the mating period where they die off, they literally cover the ground or water surfaces.

While mayflies like to primarily stick around bodies of water, they can be found in other areas. Mayflies are very attracted to light which can result in massive swarms of mayflies hanging around buildings at night. In the mornings,  piles of dead flies can be found below lights and windows. In areas that see large swarms, mayflies could affect driving conditions and visibility.


Tips on Dealing with Mayflies

There is little that can be done about Mayflies for the most part as they only live for a short time before dying off in large numbers. If you live in an area that has a mayfly problem, your best bet would be to wait out the swarm and let them die off on their own. What can be done though are ways to discourage mayflies hanging around near your home.


  • • Reduce or change the lighting: Mayflies love bright and especially white light. If you live in an area prone to infestations, we recommended reducing light as much as possible around your home or replacing white lights with yellow diffused bug light bulbs or light made from high-pressure sodium vapor. You should also do what you can to reduce the amount of light that escape through windows by closing curtains and your shutters tightly.


  • • Reduce standing water as much as you can around your home. If you have a pool, keep it covered at night. Mayflies will flock to whereverwater is to drop their eggs.


Solutions Recommended Products for Mayfly Control

If you have a large swarm of mayflies near your home or lakeside where you are residing, we recommend using a spray like Essentria IC3 Natural Pesticide. Essentria has a quick contact kill and can be sprayed freely without worry about harming any other aquatic life. Spray Essentria around bushes, trees, your lawns walkways and banisters and all around the lights they tend to gather at.


If your mayfly activity is in a place where there aren’t bodies of water, we recommend using a product like  Talstar Pro instead. This product will do a great job and will dry clear on the surfaces you treat, however the Essentria because it is all natural, will have a stronger odor of peppermint/spearmint when you do the application and may linger for a few hours after treatment. Talstar, on the other hand is odorless.


Browse our Mayfly control products below. For more information or to get any questions or concerns address, chat with us online or call our customer service line and we’ll help you right away.


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