Why Do Fly Swatters Work?

If you’ve ever tried to swat a fly with your hand or with a book, you’ve probably found that the pesty insect takes off before you can strike it.

Flies have sensory hairs over their bodies, and these hairs can feel slight changes in air pressure. A moving hand pushes the air down on the fly, and the insect’s hairs pick up the change in air pressure and alert it to take off.

What makes a fly swatter work is not its shape or its strength, but the holes in it. When you swing a fly swatter, air passes through the holes, and not enough air is pressed downward on the fly to alert it.

Comments

  1. al says

    I knew why a flyswatter works,holes, etc.
    I want to know what kills the fly?

    They don’t get squashed. Does it break their necks? Is it the concussion?

  2. Robert Rambaldi says

    Neither…when they suddenly realize they cannot escape and are doomed, they cringe so quickly and tightly, it compresses all their inner organs and death occurs a few milliseconds before impact.

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