Why flies are hard to swat, and how to outwit them

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2021/01/14/why-flies-are-hard-to-swat-and-how-to-outwit-them.html

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Nuke the site from orbit. It’s the only way to be sure.

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No risk in arming an “A.I.” fortified fly image detector with a medium powered laser, now is there?

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just catch it with chopsticks, duh.

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I have this and i love it. Never have any issues killing flies and its fun to use

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See also:

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This is why I tell my kids to leave the friggin’ spiders alone.

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Help me! HELP ME!!!

image

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I use a mixture of vinegar and water in a spray bottle.
The spray gives me maximum coverage, the vinegar is harmless, leaves no stain and the buggers hate it.
Works for many small flying critters. Moths, flies, mosquitos…

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My strategy is a bit simpler: clap my hands an inch or two above the fly by the fly’s orientation. May not be as effective as what is described here, but I get way more flies than most people.

/weird flex

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I got the first version of the Bug-a-salt, and it’s way underpowered, alas. Still looks cool as a cosplay prop though.

I’ve fount the most effective way to kill flies - assuming they have landed on a horizontal surface - is to clap your hands right above them. The fly will jump right between them. Technique might be adaptable for vertical surfaces, but I haven’t tried.

Update - I see someone already mentioned this!

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I have the 2.0 version and the 3.0 and both work great. I would recommend reaching out to the guy that made these if you want, he might know how to modify the original to give it more oomph. Should be a spring upgrade with the firing mechanism, i know that he’s helped people with similar issues in the past.

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For further nuance on the “clap method”, the way I learned is that if you move your hands slowly in unison, from opposite directions, the fly doesn’t recognize the movement - like noise canceling headphones for the eyes. So you can move in quite close before you deliver the final clap. And yes, clapping about an inch above the fly is deadly effective.

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I find that if I start swinging the flyswatter several feet away, and continue as I get closer, the fly is indifferent… until it’s too late.

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That is awesome! How does it get such high velocity with salt? Those videos make it seem like it carries quite a punch.

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I got one this past summer and have been largely happy with it.

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Those ones at the beach are the worst. I try to cover my legs in sand but that does not seem to deter them.

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From WikiHow: Swat it with a spatula:

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Optional: clean it before putting back in the kitchen drawer.

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I haven’t looked at the mechanism myself but i would presume it might be a dispenser that gets the right amount of salt loaded onto a receptacle that’s attached to a heavy spring. Similar to how a nerf gun might operate i might guess. But its pretty fun to use, i don’t get to break it out much but on the few times i’ve needed it it’s great because i don’t have to worry about getting super close to a fly or bug. The only thing i’ve had trouble getting used to is the aiming, but i have at times even been able to snipe a fly out of the air.

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If you’re without a swatter, clap your hands about an inch above the fly. It rarely fails, though you do end up with fly guts on your hands. But we’re all washing our hands 48 times a day anyway.

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