Of the thousands of species of flies, only a few are common pests in and around the home. Some of the more common nuisance flies are the house fly (Musca domestica), the face fly (Musca autumnalis), the stable fly (Stomoxys calcitrans), the little house fly (Fannia canicularis), and several species of garbage fly (especially in the genus Phaenicia). These pests breed in animal wastes and decaying organic material from which they can pick up bacteria and viruses that may cause human diseases. In addition, adult stable flies (sometimes called "biting flies") feed on mammalian blood and can give a painful bite.
Because they have sponging mouthparts, house flies cannot bite; however, they may play an important role in disease transmission to humans and animals. House flies serve as carriers of disease agents due to their predilection for feeding on animal wastes, garbage, and human foods. House flies are known to carry bacteria and viruses that cause conditions such as diarrhea, cholera, food poisoning, yaws, dysentery, and eye infections.