WARNING:  Some may not be able to handle this story and a meal within a few hours of each other.


If you have lived in the South for any stretch of time, you have undoubtedly come across Mother Nature's decomposers: Maggots!

Some people's skin starts to crawl at the mere mention of the word, but maggots play a significant role in our ecosystem: they help get rid of things that are rotting!  Fruits, vegetables, some plants and, yes, that possum on the side of the highway.

Without maggots (which are nothing more than fly larvae) eating away at these things, it would take much longer for them to decompose.  You know that smell of a rat that died in your attic or in the wall?  Well, that stench would be 10-fold if not for the maggots doing their thing so, as gross as they sound/look, they actually provide a great service.

Look at them just going to town on this lizard that got trapped between our screen and the window.

Once the maggots mature, they become flies, and they simply fly away (if there is no other food source available).  So, to get rid of maggots might be contradictory to what is best: letting them take care of the problem.  Unless, of course, it's Fluffy, your cat that has been missing for 3 days.  If you find her under a bed, full of maggots, by all means, drag her out of there and the maggots go with her!  But if it is a dead rat under the deck, or even in the wall, you might just want to let nature take it's course.  Yes, the aroma may stick around for another week or so, but ventilating the home is much cheaper than cutting away walls trying to find the origin of the offensive odiferousness (I LOVE to make up words!).

If it is a possum or raccoon that played chicken with a Goodyear, then you can just shovel it up (along with the maggots) and place it in a trash bag, tie it up, and put it in the trash can and let the waste services deal with it.

If you want to kill maggots, though, there are a few ways to do it: this website lists them, including using boiling water, below freezing temperatures, stepping on them, taking them fishing or feeding them to chickens.  (Funny, they never mentioned fire.  Hmm.  That's the first thing I think of when maggots come to mind: BURN THEM!  BURN THEM ALL!!).

Now that I've finished writing this story, I will retreat to my room and think about what I just did (Mom used to make me do that when I got in trouble, and I get the funny feeling that this post might get me in trouble.  I'll be in my room if you need me.).

(How To Get Rid Of Things)