Common flesh fly (Sarcophaga carnaria)


Availability: Flesh flies are available now. Contact Liz (eegraham@life.uiuc.edu) to schedule a pickup time (right after class is convenient). We will provide you with several maggots. They will come in a small plastic container with just enough food to get them home, so make sure your container is set up and ready to go BEFORE you pick them up.

Housing: Larvae can be reared in a shallow tray partially filled with thinly sliced liver.  Place the tray in a warm, dark, humid room.  Maintain a high humidity in the room so the development tray does not become dry.  Larvae will burrow into the liver until ready for pupation.  They will then wander away from the liver, and are bext collected by placing the tray in a large box with openings at the bottom corners.  The larvae drop from the development tray into the wooden box and migrate to the corners where they fall into jars partially filled with soil placed below the openings.  The larvae will burrow into the soil to pupate.  Once they pupate they should be covered with moistened soil and leaf litter and placed in a warm room (about 81 degrees F).  Adults should emerge about seven days after pupating.  If sufficient moisture is not present, the pupae will shrink and become quite angular in appearance.  These pupae will not hatch unless moisture is provided.  Often such pupae develop normally up to the time when they should hatch.  Then, they are unable to break through the puparium and soon die.  Adults can be reared in a screen cage, or a large bucket with a wire lid.  A shallow tray with wood shavings or cardboard with water added provides a constant water source.

Food: Larvae feed on dead and rotting meat.  They can be reared on pieces of raw liver, or steaks, but liver works best.  Adults feed on dry sugar, sugar cubes placed in a shallow dish work well.