If you are planning on a barbecue any time soon, one of the problems you may face is flies swarming all over you and your barbecue. These flying insects can easily spoil the fun at your outdoor party. Here are some effective ways to keep flies away while grilling.
Why your grill attracts flies in the first place…
- Your grill is a haven of resources. You may already know this, but flies are not picky eaters. If it is organic, you are sure flies will eat it. Flies are attracted not just to the meat you are grilling, but also to the cheese, oil, and other debris that has accumulated on your grill while you cook. Your grill is just filled with resources that make flies salivate.
- Flies thrive outside your home. House flies are some of the most common household pests because they live in close proximity to humans. Flies thrive outside your home — especially if you have debris and garbage that can sustain them.
- You don’t even try to keep flies away while grilling. Flies are attracted to your grill. They also thrive outside your home. It’s only natural that you will attract these pests while you are grilling. But you are not giving yourself a fighting chance if you don’t even try to prevent these pests from ruining your barbecue. Read on and learn how to keep flies away while grilling.
Keep flies away while grilling
1. Keep the outside of your home clean
Even if there are no flies breeding near your property, flies can still be in the vicinity because these small creatures are industrious foragers. So, if you have flies swarming around while you are cooking outdoors, it doesn’t necessarily mean that flies are breeding directly on your property. However, this doesn’t mean you should just let flies breed on your property just because they are somewhat inevitable. You are not doing yourself any favors with such a defeatist attitude.
Keep your property clean. Cut your greeneries, so they don’t offer refuge to flies. Keep your garbage cans covered and empty. And don’t leave food items, including pet food and excrement, out in the open.
2. Cover or empty your garbage cans
Female flies don’t really try to protect their eggs. They just try to find a place full of resources and leave them there. When the eggs develop, the emerging maggots will immediately have the resources they need to sustain themselves. “Resources” is a very loose term here. Even your garbage cans are full of resources because flies are not picky eaters.
If you don’t empty your garbage cans regularly, or at least keep them covered with lids, they can harbor maggots that will eventually become full-blown flies.
3. Make food inaccessible
This is such an obvious tip on how to keep flies away while grilling. But you will be surprised by the number of people who don’t even try to cover their food while they are cooking outside. Cover both the cooked and uncooked meat.
You can use dedicated food covers — dome-like structures that are meant to protect food. They come in many forms. They can be made of metal or plastic mesh. If you don’t have food covers, you can try to improvise. You can use aluminum foils and plates to cover your food.
4. Use fly traps
There are commercial fly control products you can try to get rid of the pests, but you don’t want to use pesticides around your grill. You can use fly traps instead. Some of the most common and effective ones are sticky traps. These are pieces of paper with adhesive. They capture all the flies that land on them.
There are also DIY traps you can try. Most of these traps take advantage of the fact that flies are attracted to food. For instance, there is a DIY fly trap where you attract flies with vinegar and drown them with a pool of dish soap. Here’s an article we have written about it.
Take note that commercial traps will always be more effective. If you choose to use commercial traps, avoid bug zappers. They can cause more harm than good. If you choose to use DIY traps, make sure that you are using ingredients that actually attract and kill flies. There are many home remedies out there that actually don’t work.
5. Try natural fly repellents
One of the greatest assets of flies is their strong sense of smell. It helps a lot when they are looking for food and water. But you can take advantage of this. Natural ingredients with strong smells can repel flies. Some of these ingredients can be fragrant for us humans too even though they are repulsive to flies.
Basil, cayenne pepper, cloves and lemons, lavender, and mint are some of the best options. You can combine them with water and then spray them around your outdoor grilling area to help repel flies. They are great to add scents to your outdoor grilling area as well, especially if you have guests who can appreciate them. You can’t say the same thing about pesticides.
6. Grilling indoors will help to keep flies away
One simple way to keep flies out while grilling is to just grill indoors. However, this way is not as simple as it sounds.
You should not bring your outdoor grill inside your home. Outdoor grills produce a lot of smoke and carbon dioxide. This can be a health issue. Some people even die because of this. If you want to grill indoors, use a grill that is specifically designed for such a task.
You have contact grills that work like a panini press, electric grills with flat surfaces like an outdoor grill, and grill pans that will imitate the process of grilling outdoors.
Learn how to keep flies away while Grilling
Flies can swarm while you are grilling outside. Obviously, they are attracted to the meat, and they are probably just nearby anyway because flies are almost always in close proximity to humans.
There are a lot of ways to keep these flies away. You can clean your property to prevent these pests from thriving there in the first place. You can cover your food, use traps, and apply repellents to make the area as inaccessible and inconvenient to them as possible. And when all else fails, you can just grill indoors if you have the tools for it.