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Extension > Garden > Diagnose a problem > What insect is this? > Insects found indoors > Winged Insects - 1/4 inch up to 1/2 inch > Flesh flies

Photo Credit: Susan Ellis,
Flesh flies, Sarcophagidae
Size: 3/8 - 7/16 inch long
Description: House fly-like with a grayish body and 3 black longitudinal stripes on the thorax; they have a black and gray checkerboard pattern on their abdomen

Where/When: Typically an outdoor insect, flesh flies are sometimes found indoors during the summer.

Significance: Flesh flies are usually associated with decaying animals, excrement, or other sources of decaying organic matter. When found indoors during the summer, especially when large numbers suddenly appear, they are probably associated with a dead animal in a wall void, attic, or similar place. Since it is associated with waste and decaying matter, it can potentially be a vector of disease-causing bacteria. Flesh flies do not bite.
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