The Pests That Sneak Into Your Kitchen

the pests that sneak into kitchen

Most pests at least have the common courtesy to hide in your basement most of the time. Not kitchen pests, though. Oh no. Kitchen pests are a special kind of upsetting. They come after YOUR FOOD. You could end up biting into your favorite snack only to find something… considerably less appetizing inside.

Yeah. That’s just untenable. The last thing you want to is to be paranoid about the food you eat every day. To avoid that situation, you have to do everything you can to keep pests out of your kitchen. We’re here to help. These are the four most common kitchen pests in Michigan, and how to keep them out of your food.

Indian Meal Moth

There are several species of pantry moths that will wreak havoc on your stored food. The most common and problematic of these pests is the Indian meal moth. Indian meal moths lay eggs in dry, stored food like cereal, bread, and sugar. When these eggs hatch, Indian meal moth larvae feed on your food continuously. In the process they produce waste and excrete a fine, web-like silk. Indian meal moths inflict a surprising amount of damage to your food, and they inflict it surprisingly quickly.

Indian meal moths generally get into your home when you accidentally bring them in on food packaging. Adults are brown or tan and tend to blend in with brown paper bags or packages. Larvae can chew through cardboard and some plastic, and often sneak into boxes. Check your groceries carefully before you bring them inside. Don’t buy food items with damaged packaging. Clean your pantry regularly to prevent crumb build-up and clutter.

fruit flies

Fruit Flies

Fruit flies are attracted to organic foodstuffs that’s ripe, fermenting, or moist in any other way. The food that attracts fruit flies constantly produces a thin film of moisture that coats its surface. Fruit flies lay their tiny eggs inside this thin layer of moisture. A single fruit fly can lay up to 500 eggs, and the flies complete their life cycle very quickly. Unfortunately, that means fruit fly infestations grow rapidly. Virtually any amount of food moisture will foster fruit fly eggs.

To keep fruit flies out of your home, you have to deprive them of nesting environments. Pay close attention to where you’re keeping your food. Never leave fruits or vegetables sitting out in the open for extended periods of time. Store fruit and vegetables in their appropriate fridge cabinets, and keep them in bags. Clean surfaces thoroughly after preparing meals and eating. Fruit flies are also attracted to garbage, so make sure you take your garbage out regularly.


The most common cockroach in Michigan is the German cockroach. Roaches are attracted to dark, moist areas where they can feed in peace. Generally, you’ll find them under your sink or in and around your garbage. They may also congregate around spills or puddles you didn’t find fast enough, especially in your pantry. Roaches contaminate any food they come into contact with. They’re also capable of spreading potentially dangerous pathogens like E. Coli.

Roaches are attracted to moisture, especially in dark and messy places. As always, garbage duty should be your first consideration. Make sure you store your garbage in a tidy, sealable plastic bag. Thoroughly rinse and dry food containers before you throw them away. You should also clean out the space beneath your sink frequently and check for leaks or puddling. Cockroaches don’t need much moisture, and they’re very attracted to humidity. Keeping your kitchen clean will help keep them away.

rodent in kitchen


Yes, every home’s eternal nemesis is also a particularly common kitchen pest. Rats and mice find hidden or secluded routes through your home into your kitchen. They follow utility pipes, squeeze through holes in cabinets, or just run beneath furniture. Once they reach your food, they chew holes through packaging to munch on whatever they can. In the process, they often contaminate a lot of food at once. Rodents can also carry and transmit diseases.

Rodents will pretty much always be able to smell your food, but you can stop them from getting it. Keep your stored food in airtight, hard plastic containers. Clean out your cabinets and pantry frequently to prevent crumbs. Wipe down kitchen counters and dining tables after every meal. As always, take your garbage out frequently, and make sure you don’t leave any behind. Patch up holes leading into your food areas, especially around pipes and other utility lines.

If you find a pest in your kitchen, it’s important to act fast. The longer you wait, the more extensive kitchen infestations tend to become. There’s also the psychological factor: no one deserves to be afraid of their own food!

Next time you notice a pest in your kitchen, give Griffin a call right away. We’ll be able to identify the full extent of your infestation and wipe it out just as quickly. You’ll be able to go back to using your kitchen without preparing meals for any unwanted guests.

What Are the Flies in my Kitchen?

Fly attracted to food in kitchen

Easily the most common pest problem people deal with every day are flies in their kitchen. It makes sense: kitchens and other food storage areas naturally tend to create ideal fly infestation conditions. There are even all kinds of different common flies, and they’re all looking for something a little different. The trick to keeping flies away is figuring out what that “something” is and making sure they can’t get it.

Start by figuring out which kind of fly is bothering you. Chances are, it’s one of the four particularly pernicious pantry pests we’ve listed below. Once you’ve identified your nemesis, follow the steps below to deprive them of what they want. Don’t give up; a fly-free future is possible! Here’s how to keep four of the most common kitchen flies from bothering you anymore:

House fly

House fliesHouse flies are dark grey flies with four black stripes on their slightly hairy thoraxes. They’re around ⅛ to ¼” long and round or oval-shaped. The easiest way to identify a house fly is to look for their prominent red eyes. Usually, you’ll notice a house fly infestation when you see one of the flies near your garbage or food. You may also find small cream-colored eggs or larvae laid on food material.   

House flies are a problem because they transmit hundreds of pathogens via their saliva and waste. They also soil food products by laying eggs inside of them. Fruit flies are naturally attracted to water, sugar, broth, and soluble food stuff, which they feed on and lay eggs in. The best way to prevent house flies is to make these breeding sites inaccessible. Keep garbage sealed and dispose of it before it begins to rot. Rinse out bottles and cans before you throw them away. Store food like grains and pasta in sealed plastic containers.


blowfliesBlowflies (or bottle flies) are small, round flies that are metallic green, blue, or copper-colored. Their metallic-looking bodies are slightly iridescent and make them relatively easy to spot. They’re usually only around ¼ to ½” long. Blowflies congregate on dead, decaying, or rotting things in great numbers. They tend to be particularly noticeable outside during the summer. If you have them inside, they’re probably flying around either your garbage or some other source of rotting material.

Like house flies, blow flies are a problem primarily because they transmit diseases. Blowflies also reproduce astonishingly quickly. A large number of flies can inhabit a food source in a short period of time. When you have a blowfly problem, the first thing you should check is your garbage. Dispose of all your garbage and rinse out your cans and dumpsters. Look for and remove any sources of decaying organic material such as pet feces or fertilizer.

Fruit fly

Fruit fliesFruit flies or vinegar flies are tiny (⅛” long), very light tan flies with almost translucent bodies. Like house flies, their prominent, bright red flies are their most distinguishing feature. Fruit flies are attracted to any organic material that’s ripe, fermenting, or otherwise moist. They reproduce and lay eggs in any thin film of moisture on top of fermenting material. A single female fruit fly can lay 500 eggs. These flies have extremely short life spans and reproduce extremely quickly.

Fruit flies are primarily considered nuisance pests, but like other flies, they can also contaminate food sources with pathogens. Any food that could produce condensation could attract fruit flies and foster fruit fly growth. Pay close attention to where you’re throwing away food, especially fruits and vegetables. Even small sources of moisture like spilled fruit juice could attract literally thousands of fruit flies. Dispose of any overripe or rotting food regularly, and rinse out your garbage cans once a month.

Cluster fly

Cluster fliesCluster flies like the common cluster fly (Pollenia rudis) usually enter homes during the fall. They look very similar to common house flies, except they have patches of bright yellow hair under their wings. During spring and summer, they reproduce and lay eggs in the soil. Cluster flies produce three to four generations in a mating season. During fall, adult cluster flies attempt to enter enclosed and protected areas in order to survive winter.

Cluster flies are largely considered nuisance pests, similar to other overwintering nuisance pests such as stink bugs. They don’t damage your home or transmit diseases. Their bodies or waste may attract other pests to the areas they inhabit, however. The best way to keep cluster flies out of your home is to block their common entry points. Seal cracks around windows, doors, thresholds, and utility lines. Repair or replace damaged screens. Patch up cracks in chimneys or roofing shingles.


If you feel like you’ve tried everything and you still have a fly problem, don’t despair. There’s a reason why flies continue to be the most common pest problem in the US. The frustrating little bugs are very good at getting theirs. Luckily, we’re even better at stopping them.

If you decide you need some help dealing with your kitchen foes, give Griffin a call any time. We have everything we need to make your kitchen fly-free and keep it that way. Your fly-free future still awaits! All you have to do is call now.

Fending Off Fruit Flies: A How-To Guide

Fending off Fruit Flies

Fruit flies are a perfect storm of small, fast, persistent, and hardy. They love to creep into your kitchen and make their home on overripe fruit, unwashed dishes, and similar sweet places. Nobody wants bugs in their banana bread!

That’s why we put together this list of five easy fruit fly prevention practices. Following these easy steps will help make sure those annoying bugs don’t make your home their home.‍

Keep rotten fruit out of your home

This is the most obvious answer to the question, “How can I prevent fruit flies?” Fruit flies, unsurprisingly, love rotting fruit. It’s what they most enjoy eating and it’s the reason they have the name they do. Any fruit that is past ripe should be cleaned up, bagged up, and taken out.

Make sure your drains and garbage disposal are free of food waste

Fruit flies love food waste, and drains and garbage disposals are popular places for food build-up to occur. Remove their potential food source by maintaining their cleanliness. Slow drains are usually a sign that there’s a clog or build-up.

In many cases, that clog or build-up is made up of the sort of organic materials fruit flies love. Pouring boiling water down problem drains can help loosen up these clogs, but if they’re still problematic afterwards, it’s best to call a professional and have them cleaned.

Clean out your recycling and garbage bins

When you drink a canned beverage and then throw it in the recycling, it’s never completely empty. There are always a few drops left. If your recycling bin isn’t lined with a bag, those few drops can build up. When they do, they’ll attract fruit flies.

Using trash bags in your recycling bin is one way to help prevent this. You should also regularly wipe and clean out all bins so that there isn’t a chance for icky sticky sweetness to collect. Cleaning your bins will be a big step toward keeping fruit flies away from your home or business.

Rinse dishes and cups as soon as you’re done using them

Do you see a theme with all our suggestions? Staying on top of cleaning food waste is the number one defense against fruit flies.

That extends from drains to bins to your dishes themselves. Never leave half-empty cups sitting around, and rinse your dishes before setting them in the sink to keep pests away.

Replace any old sponges or mops

Fruit flies are kind of gross. They’ll live in whatever filth they can find, as long as there’s a little sugar or moisture nearby. We recommend replacing the sponges you use for washing dishes in your kitchen at least bi-monthly, because these sponges are another place where their preferred food waste can hide.

Even if you try your best, sometimes things don’t go your way. If fruit flies have moved in despite your best efforts, you can call on the experts at Griffin Pest to get them taken care of quickly and permanently.