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How do I Control a Maggot Infestation?

To control a maggot infestation, promptly remove and seal garbage, clean affected areas with hot water and disinfectant, and consider using natural deterrents like vinegar. For persistent problems, insecticides may be necessary. Remember, prevention is key—maintain cleanliness to keep these unwelcome guests at bay. Wondering about the lifecycle of these pests and how to interrupt it? Read on to uncover effective strategies.
Nicole Madison
Nicole Madison
Nicole Madison
Nicole Madison

Many people use boiling water, in combination with getting rid of things that attract flies, to control a maggot infestation. You may also feel tempted to try such products as bug spray or bleach when you need to kill maggots. Bleach does not usually work, and many types of bug sprays are ineffective, however — though some people experience results when they use bug sprays that contain a chemical called permethrin. It is important to note that killing maggots isn’t 100-percent necessary for getting rid of a maggot infestation; alternatively, you can wait for them to become flies and then kill them.

People often try chemicals such as bleach to kill maggots but find the chemicals are not reliable for getting rid of a maggot infestation. Instead, you are more likely to get satisfactory results if you pour boiling water on them. For example, if you have an infestation of maggots in your trashcan, pouring boiling water on them should kill them right away. Not only is this method reliable, but it is also toxin free. Your only risk of harm is if you accidentally spill the boiling water on your skin.

Using strong trashbags can help control a maggot infestation.
Using strong trashbags can help control a maggot infestation.

Most bug sprays are unlikely to be effective when you are trying to control a maggot infestation. If the bug sprays do manage to kill some of them, you are likely to find some that are still wriggling, even after a liberal application. Bugs sprays that contain an ingredient called permethrin may be more effective than other types of bug sprays, however. This type of bug spray may kill current maggots as well as those that hatch after it is applied.

A person using bug spray to kill maggots.
A person using bug spray to kill maggots.

Focusing on the issue that attracted the maggots may also help when you are trying to control a maggot infestation. For example, if your trashcans have been infested because of smelly garbage, you may kill the maggots and then hose the can clean before bleaching it to get rid of the smell. Then, you may make sure your trashcan lids fit properly or replace them with new cans that have tighter-fitting lids. Using stronger trash bags and ensuring that you tie them securely may help as well. Additionally, if you have a maggot infestation because of the presence of a dead animal or rotting food, removing it may help.

Maggots will eventually turn into flies, which can be easily killed.
Maggots will eventually turn into flies, which can be easily killed.

Keep in mind that if you get rid of whatever has attracted the maggots, you don’t necessarily have to kill them. You can wait for them to turn into flies. If they are outdoors and nothing remains to attract them, they are likely to fly away. If they are indoors, you can use fly spray and sticky fly strips to get rid of them.

Nicole Madison
Nicole Madison

Nicole’s thirst for knowledge inspired her to become a HomeQuestionsAnswered writer, and she focuses primarily on topics such as homeschooling, parenting, health, science, and business. When not writing or spending time with her four children, Nicole enjoys reading, camping, and going to the beach.

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Nicole Madison
Nicole Madison

Nicole’s thirst for knowledge inspired her to become a HomeQuestionsAnswered writer, and she focuses primarily on topics such as homeschooling, parenting, health, science, and business. When not writing or spending time with her four children, Nicole enjoys reading, camping, and going to the beach.

Learn more...

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Discussion Comments

anon284695

I have a problem with a nesting of flies in my window screen tracks every year. My large picture window in parlor I found was loaded the whole length of the track with a straw like nesting of maggots, and not little ones, they were large.

I know they were flies, because the window became loaded with flies when they hatched. I cleaned the track out and washed the windows and track. No food of any kind was located near windows. It happens in my bathroom window also. The nests get so thick the window screen won't close.

Is there a web site to show how flies are created? We installed $13,000 in windows in the year 2000 and it has been happening since then.

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    • Using strong trashbags can help control a maggot infestation.
      By: picsfive
      Using strong trashbags can help control a maggot infestation.
    • A person using bug spray to kill maggots.
      By: TMAX
      A person using bug spray to kill maggots.
    • Maggots will eventually turn into flies, which can be easily killed.
      By: paulrommer
      Maggots will eventually turn into flies, which can be easily killed.
    • Bug sprays with permethrin and boiling water are effective for killing maggots.
      By: Steve Mann
      Bug sprays with permethrin and boiling water are effective for killing maggots.