We have all experienced a nice night turn into frustration as bugs fly about ruining our evening. If you’re looking at expanding your current outdoor lighting you may wonder if LED lights attract insects more often or in greater numbers. Unfortunately, there’s nothing that we can do to completely eliminate bugs from crashing our parties, but there are ways to reduce them. The short answer is to install the right types of lights. LEDs have been shown to reduce the number of bugs flying around at night. However, this will not completely eliminate the problem and it doesn’t work for all bugs.
Why are Insects Attracted to Light?
Not surprisingly, considering how irritating bugs can be, there have been several studies to determine what it is about light that attracts insects. And if there’s specific light that can help to decrease insect activity. These studies have shown that insects are actually able to perceive color. They have also shown that they are more attracted to shorter wavelengths. These shorter wavelengths typically include ultraviolet, blue, or green light. Insects that are attracted to light navigate based on UV light from the sun and moon so our outdoor lighting can interfere with their navigation system.
Although most bugs are attracted to short wavelengths this isn’t always the case. And some bugs aren’t attracted to wavelengths at all. Mosquitoes, for example, are attracted to heat not to light, so installing a different type of light bulb is unlikely to change how many mosquitoes you notice.
Because LED lights produce very little UV light, they are less visible and less attractive to bugs. However, depending on the color of an LED light they still can produce low wavelengths. Choosing an LED bulb that has a warm color is the best option to reduce bug activity.
Since bugs are attracted to different wavelengths and some aren’t attracted to light at all, switching out your light bulbs won’t get rid of all of them. However, using LED lights are the best option when considering insects in your landscape design.