Attracted by light, they fly in through open windows. Crane flies are harmless - they are merely large flies and they do not bite or sting. However, Daddy Long-legs can cause panic when, attracted by lights, they fly in through open windows and flap against lampshades Damage to lawns can be caused by birds and mammals digging up turf in their search for Leatherjackets.
Adults Crane flies are very slender, long-legged flies that may vary in length from 2–60 mm.
Larvae known a “leatherjackets” are about 25mm long and have a grey/brown leathery skin.
Crane flies hatch from pupae in late July and August and lay their eggs in the ground within 24 hours of hatching. The larvae hatch about 2 weeks later and start to feed on grass roots, which continues through winter and into spring. They stop feeding in May/June when they will pupate in the soil. In general, they stay underground in the day and move up to the turf at night. They are very sensitive to drying and do not survive if they are dried out by the sun. On very cloudy days when the turf is wet you can see the larvae in the turf.
Not considered to be of public health importance. Individual insects can be killed using an aerosol insect spray suitable for indoor use. Installation of fly screen mesh over doors and windows can aid to stop them entering premises.
Products to control Crane Fly “Daddy Long Legs” :
Cimetrol Super RFU (300ml)
Eradisect Flying and Crawling Insect Killer (600ml)
Eradisect Single Shot (530ml)