Melissa Kaplan's
Herp Care Collection
Last updated January 1, 2014

Homemade Fruit Fly Culture Media

©1996 Anthony Hundt


Below are some alternative to commercially produced culture media for fruit flies. It can be used to raise either the small fruit fly, Drosophilia melanogaster, which grows to 1/10 inch or the large fruit fly, Drosophilia hydei, which grows to 1/8 inch. At 75ºF to 77ºF (24ºC to 25ºC) D. melanogaster will mature in 10 to 12 days and D. hydei will mature in about 28 days.


Anthony Hundt (an old recipe of mine)

8 bananas
1/4 cup sugar
rolled oats (oatmeal)
1 packet bakers yeast

Put banana and sugar in blender and mix until the banana is liquified. Mix in oatmeal until it becomes firm, but still moist. Put mixture in wide mouth quart canning jars. Add a few granules of bakers yeast to the surface and add about 30 fruit flies. Cap the jars with a paper towel folded in fourths held on with a rubber band. Substitution with other types of fruit also works.

Variation, use the following ingredients:
1 cup banana (about 2 bananas)
1 cup apple sauce
1 Tablespoon vinegar
2 cups oat meal


"Raising Fruit Flies", Nancy Nehring
Reptiles Magazine, October 1995, pp. 26-28, 30

1 cup water
1 tablespoon cornmeal
1 teaspoon powdered agar
1 tablespoon molasses
1/8 teaspoon calcium proprionate (optional)
1 package bakers yeast

Mix all ingredients except yeast, then heat until boiling. Quickly pour mixture into clean culture jars. Cap and let cool to room temperature. This mixture can be stored in the refridgerator with a tightly capped lid until ready for use. When ready to use, sprinkle a couple granules of baker's yeast on the surface and add fruit flys. Calcium proprionate is a mold inhibitor used in bread.


"Mailbag: Raising Fruit Flies", Dr. Floyd Waddle
Reptiles Magazine, Feburary 1996, pp. 4, 6

baker's yeast
brewer's yeast
instant potato flakes
tegosept (methylparaben)

To prepare dry culture media, mix 1 part brewer's to 10 parts instant potatoe flakes by weight. When ready for use, mix 4 grams of the mold inhibitor, tegosept (methylparaben), to 1 gallon of hot water. Let cool and add an equal amount of water to the dry culture media (by volume). When the mixture solidifies, add a couple of granules of baker's yeast to the surface and add fruit flies. Calcium proprionate may be used as a substitute for tegosept.

Need to update a veterinary or herp society/rescue listing?

Can't find a vet on my site? Check out these other sites.

Amphibians Conservation Health Lizards Resources
Behavior Crocodilians Herpetology Parent/Teacher Snakes
Captivity Education Humor Pet Trade Societies/Rescues
Chelonians Food/Feeding Invertebrates Plants Using Internet
Clean/Disinfect Green Iguanas & Cyclura Kids Prey Veterinarians
Home About Melissa Kaplan CND Lyme Disease Zoonoses
Help Support This Site   Emergency Preparedness

Brought to you thanks to the good folks at Veterinary Information Network, Inc.

© 1994-2014 Melissa Kaplan or as otherwise noted by other authors of articles on this site