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Summary: Midges, often mistaken for mosquitoes, are nuisance pests for people who live near bodies of water. Some midge fly species bite while others do not.

The months of April, May, and June bring large swarms of midges which are gnat-like insects sometimes confused with mosquitoes. Midges are usually found near lakes, ponds or streams and appear to float over the water in clouds.

The adult midge becomes active after sunset when it flies to night lights on structures. Piles of dead midges may accumulate on porches and decks. It's not unheard of to discover drifts measuring eight to twelve inches deep


consisting of dead midges giving off a dead fish stench.

The Midge fly is attracted to freshly painted surfaces mistaking the shine of the paint for the surface of water. Midges will cluster on screens and window sills and can be found hanging onto drapes or other fabrics. Their small size allows them entry via air conditioning units, window screens and the smallest cracks around doors. Once inside, they die in a short period, often on window sills where they are attracted to the outside light.

There are no terrific control measures for midges. And, because they can fly as far as a quarter mile from their breeding sites, finding and treating a specific breeding site would be like finding a needle in a very large haystack. At the very best you can eliminate any stagnant standing water from bird baths, flower pots, hollow tree stumps, clogged gutters or water-holding low spots near your home.  Outside lighting attracts them so turn off outdoor lights until about forty-five minutes after sundown. Most of their activity will be done by then. You might also want to think about replacing outdoor lights with yellow, orange or red bulbs which are colors least attractive to flying insects.

Ask Rick A Question


Janice L Dean
18 Nov 2008, 20:32
We have had an infestation of biting midges for the second summer. They are finding our home (and sunroom) a perfect climate. What on earth kills them? All we have tried they are immune to. we are plauged day and night, with early evening the worst. They like faces, noses, eyes, and have made us just plain ugly tempered as they leave their itchy bites. As it gets colder they seem to go dormant, but reappear as soon as spring comes.
16 Oct 2011, 22:43
We have hundreds of midges (?) on the ceiling and walls since beginning of Oct. They do not bite or fly much - just all over the ceiling - advice? Also, house flies are rampant, worse than we have ever seen
Ask the Exterminator
21 Oct 2011, 12:30
Midges come from a nearby water source. If they get inside they would be attracted to light colored ceiling. The house flies indicates a sanitation issue. In some location there is something moist and decaying.
25 Jun 2012, 10:14
our entire house is infested with these nasty critters.
My exterminator thought I had delusional parasitosis until I found different life stages and produced the evidence. There seem to be very few adults but I can feel some stage (probably winged because on surfaces) all over a big house. They are also in our clothes- unless dried immediately before wearing they can be felt. Night time is the worst because their presence can be felt...They seem to be hitch-hikers because they are also in my car and my office. Is there anything that will kill them? Orkin has been many times and still they do not DIE.

Thank you for your help.
06 Jul 2012, 10:49
I live on a lake in NE Oklahoma. I have a partially covered deck which is unusable because of the large swarms of these creatures hanging out under the covered area where our our grill and outdoor furniture also happen to be. I have sprayed the area several times with different insecticides and keep the grill spotless after use. Last weekend I purchased a bug zapper. After one night the light was barely visible due to the thick layer of fried Midge flies. I have noticed about a 50-60 percent decrease in the population.

Anyone know of a way to clear them out or deter them from my deck?
sucetta baggett
12 Jul 2012, 02:17
i have none in the house but you open the door you cant stand it gnats and mosquitoes we dont have trash or bodys of water near by and have about 50 to 75 feet of grass, then its the road i have willow tree in between the yard and road do you think thats it or maybe my house underneath is to damp? idk
thanks much love all your advise
Ask the Exterminator
15 Jul 2012, 08:18
Small gnats called midges are attracted to sunlight reflecting off of surfaces. The mistake the reflection for water. Mosquitoes are attracted to standing water. You need to make sure you are not providing this environment by overwatering your lawn, for example.
Bob Tucker
01 Oct 2012, 02:07
I have been dealing with these for almost 3 years, every night about the same time I can feel them bounce off my face, head or where ever my skin is free for them to reach. I try and hit them when I feel them but never get them. I get bit on the forehead and my cheeks the most. I can feel them bouncing off my head now. I use a blanket sometimes, I have it over me and as soon as I feel them I drop the blanket to smash them and it works sometimes. Where do they live in my house, how to I kill them when I feel them. I am Diabetic and no one else has a problem with them biting them like me. They all think I am Crazy. I am going Crazy because they don't leave me Alone!!! I killed one a hour ago, I have a strong fan on me all the time to help and one landed on my knee where there wasn't any wind, I KILLED IT!! I was able too see it after using the zoom on my Camera and sure enough, it is a Midge. I am NOT Crazy after all. Help!!! I am in Laguna Hills, CA

28 Dec 2012, 23:29
Is there any hope of getting rid of midges completely after they have infested your house? They are being taken from house to car, work, car and back home. None of the pest control people seem to know anything about a extermination plan for them.
steve campbell
06 Sep 2013, 20:42
Has any body receive any help with the biting midge we have the same problem as JAK 28 dec2012 23:29
26 Dec 2013, 14:56
I recently got a couple of herb plants at the local store about a week or so now. I first saw the midges when I put my plants under my growlights. I put out apple cider vinegar in a bowl but they did not go to it. I mixed some soap and water and watered the plants thourghly, once I did that I thought I killed them. Cause I did not see any midges for 2 days. Now today when I got home they are all over. I noticed the rosemary plant I got especially had little ones appearing from the soil, so I drenched it in applecider vinegar. Will this work? What should I do, should I change the soil of the rosemary plant and the other plants in my room? It is the middle of winter so I cannot put my plants outside.
Ask the Exterminator
26 Dec 2013, 15:15
I prefer the soap and water rinses. Be sure to treat the soil, the top and bottom sides of the plant leaves.
13 Mar 2014, 08:42
22 Apr 2014, 07:06
we just built a home by a lake and are the only house with such a bad midge problem. Yep, you guessed it, we painted our house white. The coat our house by the tens of thousands to where it's hard to even tell our house is white. I figure a big zapper might help for a couple of days and then get overwhelmed with the sheer amount of midges, so I'm thinking of getting a couple of bat houses. Do you think my plan will help?
21 Jun 2014, 14:20
They keep coming on my window, about 5 everyday I don't know how to get rid of them help
michael doyle
05 Jul 2014, 16:05
i have the same problem , been dealing with the flying midges for 4yrs ,i think they lay egss on hair because i just went to Niagra falls washed everything spayed everything and i still had them in the hotel room, did you answer these peoples porblems ,where are the answers, thanks,
Ask the Exterminator
05 Jul 2014, 16:41
This is the comments box. There is a notice in bold red letters that says where you can get answers to your questions.
08 Aug 2014, 00:30
Does anyone ever answer these questions??? I had them identified and yes they are biting midges. A YEAR now and still being eaten alive.
Ask the Exterminator
08 Aug 2014, 15:46
You are posting in the comment, box, Jody. Read the. Old red notice above the box. Ask your question in the proper link and you will get an answer from Rick.
22 Aug 2014, 09:39
I'm a custodian and am looking for the best way to clean midge feces off glass doors. The business I work for will not turn off the outside lights at night, therefore I need an effective way to get caked-on fuzzy bill feces off the doors. Thank you in advance.
17 Sep 2014, 22:08
I have been plagued with these nasty critters for over 2 years and 3 homes. I was under the impression that it was a bedbug problem but I think these biting midges are worse.. I have used DE and it doesn't seem to work. I use the 91%rubbing alcohol and it also does not kill these things. The are in the car and in every room in our home. I am assuming we picked these up from our foreclosed home that was by a creek and on an old marshland. So treating them like bedbugs didn't work. Kept them at bay but they are still here alive and thriving. What can do to eliminate them? Is it possible for the Biting Midges to be immune to treatment like the bed bug and also live for a long time without having a feed host?? Please anything I can do myself to get rid of
29 Sep 2014, 16:59
They're in our home this is the second year this has happened. I've tried every chemical know I'm really at a loss. Please help!!!!
rob kuyper
03 Oct 2014, 23:20
How can they be killed?!?!>!
derrick mayer
18 Nov 2014, 12:15
I have had these biting midges infested in my home for 5 years now. Nothing kills them except things that kill you also, like spray paint and bleach. They are immune to pesticides. The females bite humans, suck blood for their babies and need warm moist soil to live and lay eggs. Pesticide companies just laugh and say no such thing. Well look at all the blood on my sheets and pillow cases bud. They get in your eyes, ears, nose and mouth and rarely can you see them.
Mitchell Wolnowitz
05 Jan 2015, 01:00
PLEASE PLEASE Help me my cat and I are being eaten alive. Thought I had the problem licked for a while but now they are bad worse than ever I have so many open sores from the bites they open when scratched I am going to get an infection and my poor cat all he does is scratch and bite himself to try and get them off him flea collar has no effect I have tried vinegar and soap traps, sprays I have not opened a window in 6 months. The land lord refuses to do anything I told him there is something living in the attic I hear it running around at night and sometimes it smell so bad like something died He says its nothing I show him my eaten body and bloody sore and he says there is nothing that's causing this he must be blind PLEASE HELP ME I CAN NOT MOVE BUT I CAN NOT TAKE THIS ANYMORE AND I CAN NOT WATCH MY CAT SUFFER.I spoke to a lawyer and they said nothing he can do i should just move I do not have the money to move please please help
Anne Kann
25 Mar 2015, 08:37
I believe I have midges too, bug man blew me off, told my husband I have dry skin? But hello, I have bites day and nite. Where do they hide? I ditched my plants. Do they get in my trash and lay eggs there? Do they hide in my curtains? I am desperate. I put Campho-phenique on the bites, it seems to heal them. But I find they seem to bite me in the same spots several days in a row. Bugman left sticky sheets but I think I'll have to hang them on my face to catch any bugs! Where can I find stages of these to show him, or just dead ones. Please help me...
Ask the Exterminator
25 Mar 2015, 10:42
If you cannot produce a sample insect you will get little help from a pest control professional. Identification is the first step in pest management. Somehow, you're going to have to capture a bug before any legitimate company will help. Or, you can keep calling in pest control companies. Eventually, someone will take your money.
10 Apr 2015, 09:54
we are infested with black, tiny, biting flies. we live near sea. what shall we do to get rid of them & treat its bites. it is very itchy. there are indoor but much plenty outdoor & near our dogs. we have caught a few but most immediately disappear. please help u.
Ask the Exterminator
10 Apr 2015, 10:05
Move inland! No! Seriously. There is nothing you can do about biting midges when you live so close to a water source. That's where they live and breed. The only relief is to remain indoors.
Robin Murren
10 May 2015, 20:30
PLEASE-PLEASE-PLEASE help with any suggestions you have about midges control
We live by a lake so we know that's
part of the problem. We can't enjoy our deck--would screening it in be effective
derrick mayer
10 May 2015, 20:59
Robin...they make outdoor midge traps that run off propane...little expensive but they work. My midges live in my house and come from the crawl space I believe, for 6 years now I have been eaten alive. Nothing kills them that wont also kill you. Best of luck!
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