Facts, Identification and Control
Fungus gnats are small flies that infest soil, potting mix, mulch and other sources of organic decomposition. Their larvae primarily feed on fungi and organic matter in soil.
Fungus gnats (Orfelia and Bradysia species), also called dark winged fungus gnats (Sciaridae), are dark, delicate-looking flies similar in appearance to mosquitoes.
Females lay tiny eggs in moist organic debris. Larvae have a shiny black head and an elongated, whitish-to-clear, legless body. They eat organic mulch, leaf mold, grass clippings, compost, root hairs, and fungi. If conditions are especially moist and fungus gnats are abundant, larvae can leave slime trails on the surface of media that look like trails from small snails or slugs.
Adult fungus gnats don’t damage plants or bite people; their presence is primarily considered a nuisance. Larvae, however, when present in large numbers, can damage roots and stunt plant growth.
Fungus gnats develop through four stages—egg, larva (with four larval stages or instars), pupa, and adult. The tiny eggs and oblong pupae occur in damp organic media where females lay eggs and larvae feed. At 75ºF, eggs hatch in about 3 days, the larvae take approximately 10 days to develop into pupae, and about 4 days later the adults emerge. A generation of fungus gnats (from female to female) can be produced in about 17 days depending upon temperature. The warmer it is, the faster they will develop and the more generations will be produced in a year.
Fungus gnats have many overlapping generations each year. Outdoors, they are most common during winter and spring in interior areas of California, when water is more available and cooler temperatures prevail. They can occur during any time of the year in moist coastal regions and indoors.
Gnat Control by Mosquito Platoon (Natural and Organic):
Mosquito Platoon will apply an Organic and Natural Granular Gnat Control Application to your landscaped and mulched areas, including compost piles. The Gnat Control granule is corn cob, wintergreen oil, thyme oil and eugenol oil (eugenol is made from the oil of cloves and is used in food flavoring, soap and cosmetics). Gnat Control will need to be watered in to take full effect. Watering is the responsibility of the home owner if there is no rain. The Gnat Control Application, usually only needs to be done once a season if customers do not over water or introduce new mulch or container plants.
· Fungus Gnats feed and multiply at the root level of mulched beds where the 21-Day Barrier spray will not penetrate.
· Fungus Gnats can be developed in about 17 days depending upon temperature. The warmer it is, the faster they will develop and the more generations will be produced in a year.
· Moist and decomposing grass clippings, compost, organic fertilizers, and mulches are favorite breeding spots.
· Over watering, high volume irrigation or poor drainage will aggravates the problem.
· Introducing new mulch and top soil will imports mosquito, fly and gnat eggs and larvae to your property.
· Introducing new container plants will imports mosquito, fly and gnat eggs and larvae to your property.
· Mosquito Platoon can solve the problem with an organic and natural pesticide with usually only one application.