ST. PAUL, Minn. - From sticky traps to spray and pesticides companies try all sorts of things to keep flies at bay, but now, researchers at St. Paul-based Ecolab Inc. might have discovered the next fly fighting tool.
"500,000 flies have been tested," said Ecolab's Staci Johnston who helped to create the Stealth Fly Station.
Hundreds of hours of research, using hundreds of thousands of flies led to a discovery - flies are attracted to the color black, to a slightly mirrored surface and to stinky stuff.
"The odor is just a natural organic process of materials just decaying," explained Johnston.
A little packet of smelly stuff is placed at the base of the Stealth Station. We can't really smell it, but flies can't resist it, especially the females.
"When we check the station, we find the males down on the edge and the females are actually down in that odor," said Johnston.
The Stealth Fly Station is sprayed with pesticide and any fly that hits it, carries that pesticide with them and eventually dies.
To see it in action is something else, Ecolab shared a video with us where 1,500 flies are released in a room. It took some time, but after an hour or so more than 1,200 flies died.
It's a simple design. It hangs easily and is already in place at outdoor spots in Europe.
"Given the Olympics, we rushed this to the United Kingdom. It's hanging now for customers over there so that they can provide food safety solutions for people who are enjoying the Olympics," said Ecolab's Ann Mamer Lloyd.
Flies can carry more than a hundred pathogens that can cause disease.
The aim of the Stealth is to create a no-fly-zone near restaurants and other outdoor public spaces.
For now, the product is not sold in stores and can only be purchased through Ecolab.
The company installs and services the traps and charges a fee depending on how many a restaurant or business may need.
(Copyright 2012 by KARE 11. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)