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Entomology (Study of Bugs)/Unidentified tiny black bugs with wings




Around 5 months ago I had an infestation of tiny black bugs in my kitchen window. They did fly, although they mostly ran. Every morning I would find around 35 bugs in the kitchen window and floor, most of them dead. Sometimes I would see them flying in my bedroom or living room, but just a couple of them. I cleared my trash every day and they didn't go away. I even found some inside my fridge. A pest control company came, and bombed and sprayed my place. Their theory is that they were fleas (I was never sure of this diagnosis as I never presented bites and they had wings). After that, I still saw a couple of them and decided to throw away some organic soil I had for my plants. After that, they were gone, but also the winter came. I live in Cambridge, MA.

A few weeks ago I think I saw a similar little black bug flying a couple of times, once in my bedroom, once in my living room. But then nothing happened, so I thought those were probably different.

Yesterday I saw one of the bugs AGAIN in the kitchen window sill. It is a bit larger than the ones I saw before, but I think it is the same bug. It was dead. This morning I saw another two! One is minuscule, the other one a but bigger, but smaller than the one I saw first. I left my kitchen window open for 2 days for the first time in months, as the winter here is extremely cold. I'm very concerned cause I don't know if maybe there is a nest outside my window (how did they survive the winter?!) or if there is something hidden in my place. I don't think they are fleas, as they don't fly, and I don't have any animals, nor bites. Please help me to identify them! I'm attaching a picture of the bigger one I found this time.

Also, any advice on how to get rid of them would be great.

Thanks a lot!


This is a fly but I can't see enough detail to id much further. It is not a flea (and I would not hire the pest control company that mis-identified this as a flea!). Flies can develop in a wide variety of materials so an exact answer depends to some extent on what type of fly this is. You might want to take a sample to your local Extension office or the Entomology Dept. at Harvard as both will have an insect id clinic. Once we have an id the source of the flies will be fairly obvious. There's no reason to be overly concerned as none of these flies pose a health threat and they won't damage your home.

Jack DeAngelis

Entomology (Study of Bugs)

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Jack DeAngelis


I can answer questions in any area of entomology (study of insects, spiders, mites, ticks, and other terrestrial arthropods). Contact me about home and garden insects, insects that bite and sting, and insects that damage homes such as carpenter ants and termites.


20 years as university extension entomologist, now retired; currently publish a website about home and garden insects.


Ph.D. in Entomology

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