Are Blue Bottle Flies Dangerous?

By Janhvi Johorey, Psychologist specialized in animal therapy. April 26, 2017
Are Blue Bottle Flies Dangerous?

Lots of fly species are from the Midwest. One of these is the bluebottle fly. The dead truth about why these inhabit your house can be quite deadening (literally and figuratively). But are these flies dangerous? Bluebottle flies generally thrive on organic compounds. They have sponging/piercing/sucking/lapping parts in their mouth and suck the liquid produced by stomach acids when coming into contact with organic creatures or objects.This AnimalWised article seeks to allay the concerns of those who wonder “are blue bottle flies dangerous or just a fly on the wall?”. Read on to know more about whether you should consider these flies lethal or not.

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The truth about blue bottle flies

The Bluebottle fly is from the Diptera family. This has a unique blue color and eats dead and decaying material. Bluebottle flies are named so because the term comes from the bot (an ancient term for maggot. Their ability to transmit diseases is considered by many to be second to none.

Blue bottle flies do not bite, though it will commonly feed on live animals' wounds.

Possible dangers of blue bottle flies

Disease transmission

The most important deadly feature of this fly group is the transmission of diseases. Outdoor vendors and restaurants not only survive but thrive these days. A fly's resting spot just before it landed on your food item may be less than savory or even hygienic. Those lacking in personal hygiene and leaving decomposing food or organic matter outside, are just empowering the bluebottle flies to make you dangerously sick. The different pathogens carried by the fly include e.coli, typhoid, dysentery, TB, anthrax.....the list goes on and on. The bottle fly can be blue, black, bronze, gold or green. What is distinctive about these flies is their metallic sheen.


The bluebottle fly is known as the “filthy fly” because it survives and thrives on rotting matter including dead bodies! Dead animals stuck in chimneys can also cause the larva of the fly to drop into the fireplace, become pupae and infest the house and its occupants! Maggots are their best pals and these bluebottle flies are found in decaying food or organic matter.

Moreover, blue bottle flies lay eggs in wounds and dead tissue, which is why it may lay them on your pet's body and cause blood poisoning.

Are Blue Bottle Flies Dangerous? - Possible dangers of blue bottle flies

Facts about the blue bottle fly

They are from one of 16,000 species belonging to the order Diptera. If you are not sure if you have blue bottle flies in your house or area, take a look at these facts to identify it properly.

How to identify a blue bottle fly

The unique shiny metallic abs of this fly make it easy to notice. The bluebottle fly has a thorax, head, and abdomen. It is the abs which stick out the most. Their heads have large red compound eyes and black antennae. Wings have veins that are light brownish in color. The fly has a sturdy exoskeleton with hairs. These hairs on the legs, body and mouth act as receptors for smell and taste. The outer cuticle, the basement membrane, and the epidermis constitute the exoskeleton. The cuticle has sensory hairs.

The adult bluebottle fly ranges from ¼ of an inch to three-eighth of an inch. It looks like a common housefly with the exception of its distinctive blue color.

Are Blue Bottle Flies Dangerous? - Facts about the blue bottle fly

The life of a blue bottle fly

The life cycle of a bluebottle fly is akin to other bottle flies. This comprises the egg, larva, pupa and adult stages.

Its diet includes carrion, pollen, and nectar. It pollinates in the same way as a honey bee. The blue bottle larvae is a cannibal too. Besides eating animal corpses it is predacious or feeding on other flies larvae. In fact, the fly serves as a useful indicator to forensic teams to make out how long someone was dead.

The female bluebottle fly lays up to one hundred and eighty eggs! This white or yellowish worm or larva that hatches from the eggs is a maggot-like creature. Two to ten days later, it pupates and emerges in two weeks from the cocoon.

Other fun facts

  • A massive group of bluebottle flies is a swarm.
  • Each eye of the bluebottle fly has four thousand facets to help them see.
  • The bluebottle's smelling distance is over 750 yards. It expels matter 4-5 minutes.
  • It can travel three hundred times the length of its body in a single second.
  • Wings move at the rate of two hundred times per second.
  • Another interesting fact is the bluebottle flies can succumb to fungal disease!
  • While these flies do not live long, they ensure other species life spans are threatened too!

If you want to read similar articles to Are Blue Bottle Flies Dangerous?, we recommend you visit our Facts about the animal kingdom category.

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