fruit fly

noun

Definition of fruit fly 

: any of various small dipteran flies (such as a drosophila) whose larvae feed on fruit or decaying vegetable matter

Examples of fruit fly in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Pests controlled: Yellow traps attract whiteflies, fruit flies, male winged scales, leafhoppers, fungus gnats, midges, male winged mealybugs and leafminers, thrips, psyllids, and winged aphids. The Editors Of Organic Life, Good Housekeeping, "The 7 Best Organic Pest Control Techniques For Your Garden," 18 Dec. 2017 In the last two decades, researchers have identified sleep-like behavior in fruit flies, tiny nematodes, and even a brainless jellyfish. Michael Greshko, National Geographic, "Brainless Creatures Can Do Some Incredibly Smart Things," 21 May 2018 Until now, the four genes were thought to be one, NOTCH2NL, itself a spinoff of the NOTCH gene family, which controls the timing of development in everything from fruit flies to whales. Elizabeth Pennisi, Science | AAAS, "Trio of genes supercharged human brain evolution," 31 May 2018 Formal studies have shown that the sweetener erythritol, which is approved for human consumption, can be fatal to fruit flies, suggesting it could be used as an insecticide. Anna Diamond, Smithsonian, "Do Marine Mammals Yawn and More Questions From Our Readers," 28 June 2018 The residence was full of trash and dirty dishes, as well as clothes, and fruit flies were seen upstairs. Harriet Sokmensuer, PEOPLE.com, "Teen Girl with Disabilities Suffered a 'Slow Death' from Her Mother's Neglect, Authorities Allege," 13 June 2018 Pastor-Pareja, the geneticist who gave up Yale for Beijing, specializes in studies of cell biology using fruit flies – Drosophila melanogaster. Author: Ben Guarino, Emily Rauhala, William Wan, Anchorage Daily News, "China challenges American dominance of science," 4 June 2018 Pastor-Pareja, the geneticist who gave up Yale for Beijing, specializes in studies of cell biology using fruit flies — Drosophila melanogaster. Ben Guarino, Washington Post, "China increasingly challenges American dominance of science," 3 June 2018 While this infection is likely extremely rare, according to a press release, another species of Thelazia eye worm has spread across Europe in recent years, carried by fruit flies. Jason Daley, Smithsonian, "Woman Infected by Parasitic Cattle Eye Worm," 14 Feb. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'fruit fly.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of fruit fly

circa 1753, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about fruit fly

Statistics for fruit fly

Last Updated

16 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for fruit fly

The first known use of fruit fly was circa 1753

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for fruit fly

fruit fly

noun

Medical Definition of fruit fly 

: any of various small dipteran flies (as a drosophila) whose larvae feed on fruit or decaying vegetable matter

More from Merriam-Webster on fruit fly

See words that rhyme with fruit fly

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about fruit fly

Comments on fruit fly

What made you want to look up fruit fly? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

not any or not one

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Great Scrabble Words—A Quiz

  • scrabble-tiles-that-read-scrabble-quiz
  • Which of the following Q-without-U words means the number five in cards or dice?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Bee Cubed

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!