19 July 2023

Why do flies rub their hands?

By Killian

Why do flies rub their hands?

Flies have a series of really curious behaviors if you look closely. One of them is that they rub their hands or legs with a high frequency, resulting in an action that many people do not understand. As you can imagine, it is not a mere coincidence: there are reasons why these insects rub their hands.

Flies settle on any type of surface, even those that are full of dirt such as garbage cans, excrement and animal carcasses, adhering these dirty particles to their feet. A priori, it may seem that the fly rubs its legs for hygiene, but this is not entirely the case. To discover why do flies rub their handsif they all do and if these insects transmit diseases, in aHOWTO we recommend that you continue reading this article.

What does it mean when a fly rubs its hands?

The prevailing popular belief about flies is that they love to settle on surfaces full of dirt. Seeing them on dead animals, droppings and hovering over bins and garbage containers is common. After giving themselves this particular feast, it is when they usually rub their hands.

What does it mean for a fly to rub its legs? what to pretend is clean their limbs. In this way, they try to eliminate debris and clarify their receptors, both in what corresponds to touch and taste. This task is essential for flyfind a partner and food, for example.

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Why Flies Rub Their Hands - What does it mean when a fly rubs its hands

Do all flies rub their hands?

The flies have some features in which they are distinguished and which serve to identify them. A good example is the type of oral appliancebut they also present other features that they have in common, such as the sensory system.

All these insects are dependent on their antennae and legs, especially for perception, which is why they need to keep them clean. So that, all the flies rub their hands togetherthat is, its legs, in addition to cleaning its head and antennae.

The flies possess rchemical eceptors on the legs This allows them to savor, taste the substrate or the surface on which they perch. That said surface is an edible food or the substrate is suitable for depositing their eggs/larvae will determine their own recipients located on the legs, being another reason why they should keep them very clean.

Chemical receptors in flies can be compared to taste buds, as they help identify whether objects are edible or not. these insects clean their front legs and sometimes other parts of the body are also cleaned, such as other legs, wings, abdomen and even their eyes.

This cleaning action is not only carried out by flies, since other species of insects also do this task.

The extremities of the flies end in a special pads that are periodically covered with a kind of fat. It is a substance that allows them to stay on a smooth and slippery surface. Due to its high activity, this layer of fat is being lost or gets covered in dust, dirt, and food. Therefore, the act of rubbing the legs allows them to remove accumulated dirt and cover themselves with sebum again.

The lack of fat on the legs of flies has one main consequence: they become totally defenseless creatures, since they they are unable to move not even on a horizontal surface. For this reason, flies try to compensate for this disadvantage by carrying out their particular plan of personal hygiene, that is, rubbing their legs.

Do flies transmit diseases?

Unlike other insect pests that can transmit diseases through their bites, this is not the case with flies because they do not bite. Therefore, they cannot transmit them directlybut yes in an indirect way.

The feeding of the flies is usually based on rotten matter and animal feces. When the insect comes into contact with any infected food source of bacteria, parasites or viruses, they accumulate in your digestive system or in the esophagus.

When they find solid food, the flies produce a liquid based on saliva and digestive juices with which they break the food molecules and, in this way, form a liquid substance that allows them to eat it. By this habit, any microorganisms living in the insect’s esophagus are transmitted to the point of consumption.

Despite not being frequent, flies also can transmit certain pathogens through direct contact and, consequently, transmit diseases. And it is that can get infected with some pathogens in the areas where they feed, as well as in their mating sites.

For all these reasons, flies can pick up particles containing bacteria and viruses in the beauty of its legs and body. When they land on a consumer product or other product, the pathogens attached to them can easily transmitted on their landings. Hence the enormous importance for humans that flies rub their hands to keep their legs clean and, in this way, reduce the risk of transmitting diseases.

Now that you know why flies rub their hands, discover why cockroaches die on their backs.

Why Flies Rub Their Hands - Do Flies Carry Diseases?

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