Where Do Flies Sleep?

If you live on a farm like me, one of the things that could irritate you is the buzzing sound of flies in your ears. The buzzz, buzzz, of flies all around your food and the waste bin can be a nuisance. It led me to my latest question about flies.  Where do flies sleep?

Most flies sleep during the night, except for the bloodthirsty fly we call the mosquito. These flies sleep during the day. Some places include thick weeds, caves, or brushes. A lot of flies also feed on animals and humans; that is one of the reasons why flies even wake up. 

With over 30,000 species of flies, we have only studied 7000 of these species. Of the 7000 studied species, the most common ones are house flies or blowflies. Not all flies sleep in the same place. I was amazed at the facts I learned through my research about this common pest. 

Common Resting Places Of House Flies

House flies sleep during the night after buzzing around the whole day. House flies rest during the day as well. They rest and sleep in the same places in and around the house. These places include, amongst others:

  • Ceilings- flies love places high up to keep them out of reach of most predators. They don’t choose corners as spiders love to eat flies
  • Behind curtains-obviously to be well hidden and out of reach of irritated humans
  • Close to the garbage bin-it is just easier to be close to your feeding source
  • Against the kitchen wall and ceiling-the smell of the kitchen attracts them
  • In the restroom-most restrooms have a refuse bin, and we all know they love the smell of a bathroom

Common Resting Places Of Horse Flies

Most horse flies are in brushy or low lying areas close to a water source, and they sleep during the night in the following places:

  • Under leaves or grass-horse flies are strong flyers, so they usually sleep a distance away from the feeding site
  • On branches and in tree trunks-they are well hidden because of their color
  • On animals-the female horse fly feed on animals, and it is sometimes convenient to have a nap right there and then.
  • Vegetation that overhangs onto the water and decomposing wood-it is a typical nesting ground for horse flies.

Common Resting Places Of Mosquitoes

Mosquitoes are seen as a type of fly. Mosquitoes, like flies, belong to the Order Diptera. Order Diptera is different from other flying insects family orders because they only use one set of wings to fly. 

Some have two sets, but the second set is only used as balancers. Insects that belong to the Order Diptera also have big bulging eyes and mouths designed to suck.

Mosquitoes sleep during the day, and they feed on humans and animals at night. As temperatures become cooler in the summertime, it is time for the mosquito to wake up from sleep and begin feasting. They sleep in the following locations:

  • Sheltered areas like plants or grass-they need protection from the heat of the sun
  • Caves-mosquitoes love cool and dark places; they are used to the dark
  • Barns-it is highly convenient to sleep close to the animals that will become a feast later
  • Cupboards and closets-because of its small size, it can rest in dark places without being disturbed

Common Resting Places Of Fruit Flies

Fruit flies also sleep during the night. Fruit flies are not good flyers. So they usually stay close to their food source to minimize the amount of flying. They choose to sleep in places close to the following sources:

  • Rotting or fermenting fruit or vegetables- fruit flies are attracted to fruits and vegetables sitting out on shelves, in bowls in kitchens, and ripening in the garden. It is not uncommon to see fruit flies resting on the fruit or vegetables either.
  • Drainage systems, garbage disposals, trash or refuse bins, empty beer and soda containers, and stagnating mops and buckets.-These places are their breeding ground. Fruit flies love to be around and rest in damp smelly places
  • Beer or wine bottles-purely because they are so fond of fermenting substances. They sometimes fall asleep inside the bottles

Common Resting Place Of Tsetse Flies

The tsetse fly can cause humans to sleep on a permanent basis. Being bitten by either males or females can cause sleep sickness, and where they sleep is dependent on their habitat. 

Please be careful when traveling to tsetse fly hot spots. They are primarily found in Africa and sleep in the following places:

  • Patches of vegetation and bush close to rivers and lakes-the tsetse fly sleep in the bush and vegetation close to the water source of the human and animal hosts on which they feed. Game rangers advise people visiting known tsetse fly areas not to walk through bushes as the flies rest there and may bite.
  • Lakes and ponds in arid terrain-The tsetse fly prefer cooler places to sleep and rest in, and what cooler place than close to the water.
  • Rainforests-the tsetse fly thrives in places suitable for breeding and sleeping. The overgrown and wet equatorial rainforest is the perfect place for that.


The sleeping and resting habit of flies is not a topic that is widely covered. It is a common thing for humanity to feel that flies and mosquitoes are pests. It was fascinating to me to find out about the different species of flies and where they sleep.

Flies are not very picky in choosing specific places of rest or sleep, as they can sleep anywhere. They are mindful of spiders and cobwebs, though. I am sure that they do not want to become dinner when sleeping.

After much research and observation, I found that we have not researched this insect as extensively as some other insects, especially where they sleep. I will keep my eyes on these insects in the future as I now know where they hide when they sleep.