How I stopped worrying and learned to love my fruit flies

Close-up on Drosophila melanogaster, the common fruit fly. Photo by Sanjay Acharya

One of the trivial hardships of summer in North America, along with poison ivy (or oak, or sumac), sunburns, and a spoiled half of a watermelon taking up good refrigerator space, is the fruit fly: Drosophila melanogaster.

The fruit fly’s greatest weapon may be that it, in small numbers, it is easy to ignore. In the early days of summer, five or six little flies…