DIY Fly Paper

Somehow, we’ve lost our fly swatter and there’s an odd phenomenon of tiny flies swirling around the center of our living room. It’s nearing spring, and my sense is this is the time of year they seek refuge indoors. Well, not in this door. Even the Buddhist in me wants to send these flies to a new life.

DIY Fly Paper. Photo © Liesl Clark

Before I send you on a journey to make your own fly paper, I can testify that one of the best ways to get rid of flies in your house is the half-filled Ziploc bag method. Simply half fill a medium size Ziploc bag with water, throw in a penny, and hang it in the room where you want to get rid of flies, especially in the place where they enter the room. They will scram when they see your scary water. It has something to do with the reflected light in the water, to their very many eyes, and looks like predatory danger to them. We see these bags in tea shops in Nepal and I know they do the trick.

Meanwhile, did you know that traditional fly papers used to have arsenic in them, not to mention the other toxic poisons they harbor? After searching past all the tragic posts about housepets getting caught up in fly paper (a love bird included), I stumbled upon a great DIY recipe at Going Home to Roost. We modified the recipe a bit to ensure added stickiness. And I noticed how my sweet-toothed 7-year-old jumped into the DIY game when she saw how much honey and sugar I was throwing into the pot. It might be a slow death for the winged buggers, but it’ll be a sweet one.

All you’ll need is:

Scrap paper

String or yarn

1/4 Cup honey

1/4 Cup sugar

1/8 Cup water

Cut paper strips. Photo © Liesl Clark

We used some pretty scrap paper from our scrap paper bin. No use having ugly strips hanging about the house. Our thinking was that flies like pretty colored things, too. Cut your paper into 2″ wide by 5-6″ long strips.

Punch a hole in your strips. We used a star punch. Photo © Liesl Clark

Punch a hole at the top of each strip and tie a string loop through the hole.

Sweetness in a pot. Photo © Liesl Clark

Throw the honey (I give credit to our honey bees for their fine work creating this gorgeous blackberry honey), sugar and water in a pot and bring to a simmer as you stir all the ingredients until they’ve dissolved completely. This is the point at which you can sing a witches’ song, as you stir your sweet potion in the cauldron. The kids’ll love it.

Saturated with honey bait. Photo © Liesl Clark

Place the strips individually in the pot, holding the string, ensuring they become saturated with your sticky rue.

Don't let the drips get all over the kitchen! Photo © Liesl Clark

Hang the strips where you can place a cookie sheet or newspaper below them to catch drips as they cool and dry a little.

Hanging out to dry. Photo © Liesl Clark

Then hang them up in convenient places around your home and wait for the flies to find your sweet bait.

Our first victim. Photo © Liesl Clark

I think our first victim got its tongue stuck.

4 thoughts on “DIY Fly Paper

  1. This is a great idea! I hate shop bought flypaper due to the smell and terrible stickyness. I usually try 3 things – the venus fly trap plant, train the dog to catch them, or chase them out of the window. However, as we don’t get that many flies, I do wonder if having pretty sweet smelling paper might attract more of them, haha! Lovely eco friendly idea though 😀


  2. You have a cruel streak I never expected! ☺️ We just open the window or door and guide them out! I know exactly what would happen in this neck of the woods, the ants and wasps would think we were throwing them a party!


  3. Pingback: 50 Things To Never Buy | Pioneering The Simple Life

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