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fungus gnat up close

Quick Facts

  • Adult fungus gnats only grow to 1/8th of an inch
  • Fungus gnat larvae can cause damage to plants
  • These gnats typically only live up to 10 days
  • Fungus gnats can be attracted to bright lights

Fungus gnats are a type of fly that have a very mosquito-like appearance. Adults are fragile and have a very short lifespan, living only 3-10 days. Their larvae feed on the fungi that are found in extremely moist or overwatered soil.

What do fungus gnats look like?

Adult fungus gnats are very small; adults only grow to be 1/8th of an inch in length; they have a black or dark gray slender body, long legs, and long antennae. They also have a distinctive y-shaped pattern on their smokey colored wings. Their larvae are small and worm-like; their bodies are translucent; and they have a black head capsule.

Fungus habits and behaviors

Fungus gnats are usually found living outside and thrive in soils rich in organic materials and moisture. Females lay their eggs in moist soil; and when their larvae hatch, they begin to feed on the roots of plants and fungus in the soil. During the day, adults will rest in dark, moist places coming out during the early morning and evening. Adults can be seen gathering around windows, doors, and lamps as they are attracted to light. Fungus gnats tend to become more noticeable for homeowners in the fall months when outdoor plants are moved inside to protect them from the cooler weather. They also become a problem inside when indoor plants are overwatered. Fungus gnats can also be found in and around damp woodwork, drywall, and leaky roofs; outside, they can be found present in wet decaying mulch, compost piles, and older firewood piles.

Are Fungus Gnats dangerous?

Fungus gnats are not dangerous to people. They aren’t known for transmitting diseases, and they do not bite or sting. Fungus gnat larvae can cause damages to houseplants and seedlings by feeding on their roots; plants that are planted in soil that is infested with fungus gnats may start to wilt and can experience root rot.

Does Aiken treat fungus gnats?

Yes, we do treat for fungus gnats. Please call us for more information on our home pest control services.

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