What Attracts Gnats in General Terms?

Gnats, non-biting midges, fruit flies, vinegar flies, no-see-ums and so more names can be found here and there, when it comes to their swarms, looking like clouds of smoke from a distance.

what attracts gnats

These pests are commonly mistaken for mosquitoes

(1) by their appearance - a hump-shaped back;

(2) by their habits - a bit of nighttime flying;

and (3) by their loud humming sound.

In fact, black, gray, and brown in color gnats are spread in every continent, annoying humans in their sheer numbers.

So, what attracts gnats? The answer to this question lies in the nature of these insects.

Fundamental Truth about Gnats

  • Gnats are tiny, winged and long-legged insects, but weak fliers.
  • Depending on species, they can be fungus gnats, fruit flies, and many more, either biting or non-biting.
  • Gnats feed on plants, blood, fruit, veggies, rooting items, and other insects.
  • Their males lay eggs on land or water.
  • Some gnat species are to be both harmful and beneficial. They pollinate plants and feed on crop pests, including aphids and scales. But the Hessian fly species is a crop pest itself. Females of black gnats and black flies feed on blood, carrying parasites and spreading diseases.
  • It is important to keep in mind that gnats reproduce rather quickly, and then populate infested areas in their swarms. This is how they become a serious problem to homeowners and apartment residents.

The Key Things to Which Gnats Are Drawn Most of All

  1. Non-biting midges are often drawn to lights. In summer, their swarming can be found around outdoor lighting. One may also notice them in just bright rooms, near windows or on mirrors.
  2. Fungus gnats are attracted to overwatered plants. Fungus means moisture! Actually, immature gnats feed on organic, decomposing material in the damp soil. The fungus growing there is their main treat. Gnats feed either on the roots or root hairs of plants. For this reason, they are very harmful to small and large, ornamental and edible plants.
  3. Fruit flies adore overripe or fermenting fruit and vegetables, being attracted to the moisture and scent of decaying material. For example, this can be softening potatoes, which is stored for a few months in a cabinet.
  4. So, what attracts gnats in general terms? Well, they may appear at the most inappropriate times and places. Rotting fruits & vegetables, overwatered plants, puddles & drainpipes, trash cans with food leftovers, compost piles outside, warm & moist places, carbon dioxide, birdbaths, mulch & shrubbery, plant debris, mold and fungus, bright lights.

In a word, minimizing the amount of this and that in and around your household will minimize all the chances for attracting gnats. The golden rule runs as follows: get rid of their food supply, and the pests will die. No more fungus & organic matter in the soil, no over-watering your garden & lawns, no bright outdoor lights & colors from bulbs, no attractive sink drains and garbage disposals, instead of reaching for dangerous pesticides!

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