House Fly


Actual Size: ¼”

Characteristics: Grayish-black with four black stripes on the thorax.

Legs: 6

Wings: Yes

Antennae: Yes

Habitat: Drawn toward manure piles, lawn clippings, compost, and garbage.


  • Breeds in animal waste and decaying organic matter.
  • Live in close proximity to residential areas of New Jersey and are rarely found in the wilderness.
  • Defecate every time they land, spreading bacteria and potential disease.

House Flies in North Jersey

The house fly is one of the most common and recognizable insects in the world. They can be found on every continent except Antarctica, so it’s no surprise we deal with them here in New Jersey. They’re most prevalent during the heat of summer and tend to congregate near human and animal habitats.

House Fly Habitat

House flies breed in decaying organic matter like animal waste and food scraps. This is how they pick up bacteria and viruses. Since they frequently defecate upon landing, they contaminate food and spread disease. In rural areas, house flies are frequently found in manure piles. In urban areas, flies breed and multiply in areas like garbage heaps and piles of fermenting lawn clippings. Flies love biological waste and will go out of their way to breed in horse manure, cow manure, or human excrement.

House Fly Behaviors, Threats, or Dangers

House flies don’t bite, but that doesn’t mean they’re not dangerous. They have the ability to transmit over 100 pathogens, including salmonellosis, typhoid, and tuberculosis. They obtain these pathogens from filth like garbage and sewage, which they transfer to humans and animals through their mouthparts, vomit, feces, and contaminated body parts. This means that flies should always be unwelcome at the dinner table. If you’re ever eating outside and there are swarms of flies, consider taking the food inside to finish.

If you are experiencing a house fly infestation on your property, get in touch with your local north Jersey fly exterminators.