How Long do Flies Live? Lifespan of Different Types of Flies and Gnats

Last Updated on: September 23rd, 2017 at 2:24 pm

A fly is a small restless creature that torments people, spread diseases, and causes annoyance.

There are multiple species and types of flies that have a lifespan ranging from few days to years.

In this post, we are going to see how long do different types of flies live.

The lifecycle of a fly is normally divided into 4 stages. These are:
1) Egg 2) Larva 3) Pupa 4) Adult

It is seen in multiple scientific experiments that temperature, food availability and some chemicals do affect the normal lifecycle of a fly. But, we are going to see them later in the article.

How Long do Flies Live

Now, let’s have a look at the lifespan of a fly.

Recommended Reading: Facts about House Flies

Dealing With Any Of These Fly Species ?

How Long do Different types of Flies live?

Flies developing in warm conditions with moderate food tend to grow faster and live longer than their counterparts in the wild.

Below is the table that can show you the life expectancy for different types of flies:

Fly NameFly ImageLifespan as an
Adult Fly
Total Lifespan of a Fly
(Larva + Pupa + Adult)
House Fly house-fly-lifespan15 – 60 days21 – 117 days
Fruit Fly fruit-fly-lifespan16 – 30 days35 – 61 days
Drain Fly/Moth Flies drain-fly-lifespan7 – 14 days17 – 31 days
Face Fly face-fly-lifespan7 – 14 days21 – 35 days
Horse Fly horse-fly-lifespan30 – 60 days1 – 3 years
Flesh Fly flesh-fly-lifespan10 – 14 days15 – 21 days
Deer Fly deer-fly-lifespan30 – 60 days1 – 3 years
Cluster Fly cluster-fly-lifespan12 – 18 days30 – 50 days
Bottle Fly/Blow Fly bottle-fly-lifespan7 – 20 days17 – 35 days
Black Fly / Buffalo Gnat buffalo-gant-lifespan7 – 14 days40 – 200 days
Sand Fly/Sand Gnat sand-gnat-lifespan4 – 15 days32 – 98 days
Eye Fly/Eye Gnat eye-gnat-lifespan7 – 21 days28 – 53 days
Fungus Gnat fungus-gnat-lifespan7 – 12 days18 – 30 days
Stable Fly stable-fly-lifespan5 – 9 days24 – 61 days
Dobson Fly dobson-fly-lifespan3 – 10 days20 – 38 days
Midges midges-lifespan3 – 12 days19 – 64 days
Phorid Fly Phorid-fly-lifespan8 – 14 days42 – 69 days


Note: It is important to note that the lifespan of a fly greatly depends on the temperature, food availability, and climate. And hence there may be slight variations in the above data.

Life cycle of a Fly:

Now, after knowing about the lifespan of a fly let’s see the lifecycle of a fly. The lifecycle of any fly can be divided into 4 stages: Egg, Larva, Pupa, and Adult.

Fly Life Cycle

The lifecycle of a fly begins as an egg. After some time (few days or months depending on the fly type) the egg hatches and larva comes out of it. Larva feeds on the organic matter and when it has stored sufficient nutrients it goes into pupal stage.

Pupal stage can again be of several days or months. During the pupal period the development of the actual fly like features (wings, legs, etc) begin. From the pupa, the adult fly comes out and is ready to start the cycle again

Recommended Reading: Facts about Horse Flies

Factors affecting Fly Lifespan:

Food Availability: Scientists have seen that – At moderate food levels, an adult house fly lives for about 45 – 50 days. But when they have unlimited supply of food they can only last for 30-35 days.

But on contrary to this, if flies were supplied with ample food during larval stages their lifespan and reproduction capabilities increases whereas it decreases for the flies which had less or moderate food during larval stages.

Temperature: Temperature has an important role in the growth of a housefly. For instance: at 99 degrees Fahrenheit a house fly egg hatches in about 8 hours, where as it takes 2 days to hatch at a temperature of 39 degrees Fahrenheit.

In addition to this, in warmer temperatures it takes 4 days for a larva to become an adult. But in colder temperatures it can take upto 30 days.

So, this was all about how long does a fly live. Hope you would have liked it. Thanks!

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