Do Red Lights Attract Bugs: A Guide for Homeowners

To lessen the attractiveness of nocturnal flying insects, Pest Management Professionals (PMPs) have been counseling their clients for many years regarding the type of lights to use and their suitable positions on the exterior of their houses or businesses.

Recently, there have been a few inquiries on how lighting affects the prevalence of bugs. Some bugs are drawn to light, while others are frightened of it. Certain hues of light are more attractive to specific bugs, while others are not.

Now the question arises – “Do red lights attract bugs?” Well, the answer might seem confusing to many. If you are one of them, then the information in this blog post will help you.

What Attracts Bugs to Light?

There are a few ideas among scientists as to why light draws insects. They disagree with several of the hypotheses, though. There is no denying that some insects, especially those that are nocturnal, are drawn to light. But the reason is unclear to scientists.

From the Farmers’ Almanac, we obtained the most accurate explanation. According to the explanation:

Some insects use light from the sun and moon to aid in navigating. Bugs are drawn to artificial light sources because they are stronger and closer than natural light sources, which causes them to get puzzled.

    Bugs often fly around man-made light sources because they are unsure of how to get away from them. Due to the small size of the light source, bugs can’t help but keep flying around it.

    Another idea holds that insects fly toward a light in an effort to fool any remaining hunters so that they won’t even notice them. Insects are drawn to light because their eyes cannot adapt to the shift in light as quickly as human eyes.

    Therefore, they do not want to fly away from a light source since they would lose their ability to see. Humans can see light with wavelengths ranging from blue on the short spectrum to red on the long spectrum.

    Ultraviolet light is what lies below the blue. Many bugs can see the color that certain flowers release in the UV spectrum for example – butterflies. Bugs can perceive this range of light, even when humans can’t. This provides one additional explanation for why some bright hues attract bugs.

    Do Red Lights Attract Bugs? Let’s Find Out

    The red lights actually perform significantly better at repelling insects as compared to lights of other wavelengths. Even though they will not entirely repel them.

    There won’t be a ton of insects crawling around the lighting arrangement. Because of this, a red light will serve you far better when it comes to dealing with bug issues.

    Because of the warmth produced by a bulb, it is normal to see some insect activity. Aside from that, red bulbs won’t attract bugs regardless of their type, such as – fluorescent, incandescent, or halogen.

    Since red light has a wider bandwidth and narrower wavelength than other colors, it often repels insects. According to a certain research paper (Insect Vision: Ultraviolet, Color, and LED Light)

    Most bugs are unable to see red lights when they are far away.

    As a result, you will definitely feel secure using red lighting to decorate the exterior of your home. Red lights will blend in seamlessly with your setup, and you won’t have to worry about preventing pests from entering your space.

    Do Yellow Lights Work Better Than Red Lights in Keeping Bugs Away?

    Many people think yellow lights work better than red lights when it comes to keeping bugs away. Among other colors, many insects are attracted to red lights. But the truth is that color doesn’t really matter when it comes to deterring bugs.

    In fact, some research has shown that white or blue light can be even more effective than yellow or red. To keep bugs away only depends on the intensity of the light.

    Studies have found that brighter lights are better at deterring insects because they make them feel exposed and vulnerable. The brighter the light, the less likely bugs will be to linger around it.

    So if you want to keep those pesky critters away, you can use brighter lights rather than worrying about color.

    However, Yellow lights work better than red lights because of the longer wavelength. If you want to keep bugs away from your home and yard, you can try planting certain plants, such as marigolds, basil, or lavender.

    Other Colors of Lights that Attract Bugs

    Let’s talk about Phototaxis first before mentioning light colors that attract bugs. Phototaxis is a general term that refers to either positive or negative motion along the gradient or vector of light. Research by Vulcan Termite & Pest Control indicates that,

    Insects with negative phototaxis (like cockroaches) flee when a light is switched on. On the other hand, bugs with positive phototaxis (mostly like flies and moths), gravitate toward the light and gather around it.

    On the contrary, bugs can see more clearly in blue or green light. Therefore, choosing it would not be wise. Bugs will be drawn to the UV spectrum much more than the blue spectrum when you use ultraviolet light.

    Bugs are especially drawn to bright white or blue lights, such as white fluorescent, white incandescent, and mercury vapor. The design of a bug’s eyes determines the kind of light it can see. Either trichromatic or bichromatic vision is present in insect species.

    Bichromatic-eyed bugs have two different types of color receptors, while trichromatic-eyed bugs have three. The majority of bugs are often less visible to the light of lower wavelengths.

    Thus, the colors that bugs are least able to perceive are orange, yellow, and red.

    Final Words

    Now you know red lights don’t attract bugs; rather, they are good for keeping them away. If you are bothered by bugs around your house, be sure to experiment with various red or yellow lights.

    Even though pairing certain yellow and red lighting goods together may not seem like a smart idea. But you can be innovative with the lighting arrangement.

    I can assure you that the result will be extraordinary. That is why more consumers have leaned towards using red lighting options to decorate their home’s exterior and interior over the past several years.

    About The Author

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    Written by Shimul
    Hi, I'm Shimul, the founder of Trendy Outdoor. I'm excited about sharing the latest outdoor living trends with you. My goal is to provide you with up-to-date information that will help make your outdoor space stylish and enjoyable. Read About Me More । Follow on Facebook