maggots

21 Jan

We don’t have a doggie door.  We plan to get one soon, but for right now, there is no such luxury.  For the first week or so when we got Rosie, we would just leave the back door open a little bit.  Just far enough so she could go out and in when she wanted/needed.  I wanted to make this whole potty training thing as easy for both of us as possible.

Unfortunately, with the open door, came the flies.  There were only a couple at first.  But then, seemingly overnight, their population exploded, which I suppose is not surprising considering a female lays 75-150 eggs per batch.  Flies were everywhere.  They followed us around the house trying to get moisture from our faces with their stupid sopping mouthparts, landing repeatedly despite our many attempts at the Aussie salute (for you non-Aussies, that means waving your hand(s) in front of your face to ward off flies).

a housefly and it's disgusting sopping mouthparts. Image courtesy of

a housefly and it’s disgusting sopping mouthparts. Image courtesy of jangala.co.uk

I made sure the bins in the house were tightly sealed.  I washed the dishes straight away after every meal, no food was left out, and I stopped leaving the back door open (resulting in lots of pee accidents).

But still, they lingered, copulating like wild dogs on our countertop, in the air, and in the bathroom, multiplying all the time.  At least when they are distracted by coitus, they’re easier to swat.

We cut the tops off two water bottles, inverted the top into the bottles like funnels, taped them on, and filled them with sugar syrup – home made fly traps.  A few flies wandered into the sticky liquid, unable to escape, but the majority of them flew on.

Upping the ante, we bought fly spray.  Aaron sprayed the bathroom and shut the door, killing about nine of the little buggers.  We covered everything in the kitchen with towels and he sprayed them as they slept on the kitchen ceiling.

Still there were more.  Not as many as before, but enough to be pretty darn annoying.

I went to clean the guinea pig cage yesterday morning and discovered about a thousand (I’m not even exaggerating, I mean, literally, a thousand) maggots in the bottom of the outside organics bin, and decided to kill them all.
 
Before finding the maggots, I remembered that Aaron said dog shampoo kills them, so yesterday morning when I was at the supermarket, I bought some.  Upon discovering the disgusting present in the bin, I promptly went online in search of the correct way to use said dog shampoo to kill the little suckers.
 
Unfortunately, only dog shampoos with a particular ingredient are useful in killing maggots.  The one I got does not have the needed ingredient.  Probably because I got one labelled “gentle.” My bad.  I did find a number of other ways to kill maggots though, so I picked one and got to work.
 
First, I chose the vinegar mixed with water trick, since I had a whole bunch of vinegar in the laundry cupboard (because I use it for cleaning and got it in bulk at Costco).  I poured it in, as well as down the sides of the bin to wash the creepers that were trying to escape back down into the pit of doom.  A bit later, I looked in the bin and found that a lot of them were still alive.
 
Another way to kill maggots is with boiling water, so I boiled a full pot of water in the kettle and poured that all over them too, then shut the lid to help lead them to their steamy deaths.
 
A bit later, I opened the lid of the bin again and peeked inside, nearly puking from the putrid smell of vinegar mixed with half cooked, off food scraps and dead maggots.  The whole bottom of the bin was covered in dead maggots, floating around in their watery grave, but a bunch more of the little brats were crawling up the sides of the bin, once again attempting escape.
 
A third way to kill maggots is with good old salt.  Just like with slugs and snails; pour it over them and watch them shrivel up as they dehydrate.
 
I grabbed our bulk salt container and headed back outside.  Before opening the bin, I salted all the escapees who had successfully exited the bin and were crawling around on the top of it, just outside the lids edge, and watched them shrivel up as they tried to wiggle away from the lethal dose of salt.
 
I opened the lid with my left hand and started salting more almost-escapees that were at the top of the bin.  As I salted them to their deaths, something hit my salting hand.  I glanced down at it immediately, realising with horror that a maggot had fallen off the bin lid and landed on my hand where it was currently wiggling around, mocking me.
 
A split second later, I was flapping my hand around like mad woman and accidentally dropped the whole bottle of salt into the pit of doom in the bottom of the bin.
 
I know it’s an organics bin, which is only for food scraps, twigs, grass, etc., but there was no way that I was sticking my hand all the way down into the festy bin full of putrid food and at least a thousand dead maggots.  So I shut the lid and ran off, leaving the hundred or so almost-escapees there in the bin, climbing the sides to freedom.
 
Oh well, at least I got most of them.
 
A couple hours later, I decided it was time to go back out again and finally clean the guinea pig cage, happy in the knowledge that most of the maggots were dead in the bin and I wouldn’t be merely adding dinner to their plates when I dumped the used straw into the bin.
 
I rolled the dirty straw up in the now urine soaked newspapers that lined the bottom of the guinea pig cage with gloved hands, in preparation to easily throw the whole bundle into the bin.
 
As I rolled, I was met with a horrible sight: hundreds of maggots had made their home in the bottom of the guinea pig cage, between the soiled newspapers and the green plastic.
 
I wish I still had the salt.  Or more vinegar (I used it all up in the bin).  Instead, I put the hose on jet stream mode and blasted those disgusting little creatures right out of there.
 
Hopefully, our that was the end of our fly problem.
 
The inside of the bin after all of my maggot killing. Only a few maggots escaped my wroth

The inside of the bin after all of my maggot killing. Only a few maggots escaped my wroth. I should have taken a before photo, but trust me, it’s better if you don’t see that.

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3 Responses to “maggots”

  1. Wendi S January 21, 2014 at 2:18 pm #

    So funny. I didn’t know how to kill them with dog shampoo. They are disgusting and my kids always leave the door open. Guess what too? I have guinea Pigs.

    • Mommy Adventures January 21, 2014 at 4:10 pm #

      So there’s the problem, kids, dogs, and guinea pigs, haha. I can’t keep the piggies outside because it gets too darn hot for them over here. I’d have bbq’d piggy if I didn’t keep them in the house!!! I clean their cage every week, but I guess for the moment, I’ll have to do it more often. I think the water bottle leaks too, which definitely isn’t helping.

  2. LBcruiseshipblogger January 22, 2014 at 6:21 am #

    eewwww

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