You're not alone if you notice more gnats around and inside your home. Gnats are extremely annoying insects, like house flies, and they like to swarm around your face and head. It seems like they are more of a problem now than ever. What's going on, and where are they coming from?

Unfortunately, Louisiana weather provides the perfect breeding ground for gnats, which flourish in moist and damp conditions. Because they breed and live on water, gnats will always be a problem in Louisiana. The folks at LSU AgCenter are always on top of Louisiana's pest situation and just released The Louisiana Insect Pest Management Guide. It's worth looking at, especially for residents who live or have businesses along the many rivers, lakes, bayous, swamps, and marshes in the Pelican State.

WHAT TYPE OF GNATS ARE THERE?

A lot! Louisiana has several types of gnats and flies, such as the biting Black Fly and the Fungus Gnat (which lives in soil and plants), Fruit Flies, and Drain Flies. The Mosquito is often misclassified as a midge or gnat, but it's a small biting fly with more than 3,000 species. However, all of them live and breed in and near water.

A lot of times, we bring them into our homes via fruit and various potted plants.

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WHY ARE THERE SO MANY GNATS?

According to the Office of Coastal Management, 32% of Louisiana is wetlands, and 25% is water, meaning 50% of the state is covered. Louisiana is also the second most humid state in the U.S. Climate change only makes the tropical weather conditions in the South even hotter. The warmer temperatures allow these cold-blooded insects to thrive. That's why they're everywhere!

WHAT CAN YOU DO ABOUT IT?

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Rich Walker
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Fruit Logistica Agricultural Trade Fair
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The good news is that you have plenty of options. Why not update your landscaping and kill pests at the same time? Several beautiful flowers and plants kill insects. Traps, sprays, and a variety of home remedies are also available. Below are a few great tips, followed by a DIY video on how to enjoy your home and yard gnat-free!

1.) Remove and empty anything in your yard that can trap or hold water.

2.) Keep your garbage emptied and the trash can covered.

3.) Do not allow dirty dishes to stay in the sink for long periods of time.

4.) Pour Clorox or sanitize your drains in the kitchen, sinks, and tubs to kill eggs.

5.) Do not store open food containers around your kitchen.

6.) Do not store fruit like tomatoes, pineapples, peaches, or onions and other produce out in the open.

7.) Use a simple homemade solution to help eliminate gnats. (video below)

8.) Use a gnat/fly trap.

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Gallery Credit: Joni Sweet