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What are some non-toxic ways to get rid of gnats in the house?

A:

Quick Answer

Natural techniques for removing gnats from homes include fly swatters, insect traps with ultraviolet light, vacuuming around windows and plants and taking care to not overwater plants. Gnats belong to several distinct species, including fungal gnats and black gnats. They breed and reproduce in different conditions, and therefore require different strategies for effective removal.

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What are some non-toxic ways to get rid of gnats in the house?
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Full Answer

Gnat removal also depends on their life stage. Female gnats generally lay eggs in moist areas. Indoors, their nests frequently appear in plant soil. Fungal gnats thrive in these conditions, and multiply quickly in wet soil. Keeping plant watering to a minimum and letting the soil dry between watering curtails the growth of larvae. Vacuuming windowsills and the spaces around plant pots can help kill adults.

Black gnats, also called fruit flies, are a second common household species. Adults and larvae feed on ripe fruit, and generally appear in the kitchen or dining area. Keeping fruit in the refrigerator controls population growth.

Some natural removal techniques work equally well for both species. People can kill individual insects with fly swatters. They can also install traps with lights, which attract the insects. The gnats fly into the light, which then zaps and kills them. Some traps have sticky surfaces, which also keep gnats from escaping. Since gnats reproduce quickly, people should begin removing gnats as soon as they notice the insects to prevent a widespread infestation.

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