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Why are Bugs Attracted to Light?

bugs and insects on lights

Maybe you’ve been outside at night, enjoying a warm summer's evening when you noticed that there are a bunch of bugs gathered near your porch lights and windows. Lights always seem to be attracting bugs…but why? Learn why bugs are drawn to light and how you can use this to your advantage!

Why Bugs Might Be Drawn to Light

Many different factors play into why flying insects are often found swarming lights at night. One of the reasons why is that these specific insects have positive phototaxis. Phototaxis is a natural behavior response that takes place when an organism either moves towards or away from light. Insects that are drawn towards light are considered positively phototactic. Insects that aren’t drawn to light and try to avoid it are negatively phototactic.

Another reason that bugs are attracted to light is because it’s used for navigation. Many scientists believe that specific insects used the moon, sun, and stars to fly. Before insects evolved and adapted to artificial light, they had to find their way around with the resources available.

Besides using it to get around, scientists believed it helped insects fly in a straight line. When bugs are flying, they look for a straight line forward, and if the light isn’t blocked it usually means there is an undisturbed path without many obstacles. Because there are so many sources of artificial light, the insects become disoriented by trying to keep light at a constant angle – which often results in fluttering aimlessly around the lights of your home.

Another common belief on why you often see insects flying around lights at nighttime is because the sun is down and it’s chillier than during the day. Bulbs tend to give off some warmth. In the evenings, bugs might find themselves near the light to absorb some heat.

Many nocturnal insects are often found flying around lights. Insects you might spot are:

  • Moths
  • Flies
  • Mayflies
  • Beetles
  • Mosquitoes
  • And more!

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    Dynatrap® 1/2 Acre LED Willow Mosquito & Insect Trap - Forest Green
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  5. Dynatrap® LED Indoor Fly Trap, white
    Dynatrap® LED Indoor Fly Trap - White

How to use Light as a Lure

Sure, the bugs that are near your porch floodlight may not be bothering you exactly, but you don’t want them making their way into your house through the doors or windows. Plus, no one wants to be sitting below a swarm of bugs!

Use the light against these flying pests with Dynatrap® Outdoor Insect Traps. These traps use advanced technology to deliver unmatched control of mosquitoes and other flying insects. Here's how it works: the LED bulb generates warm UV rays that attract flying insects, day and night. As insects approach the device, a powerful fan pulls them into the catch basket. Once inside, a patented damper keeps them securely trapped.

Dynatrap® is incredibly easy to use - simply plug it in, turn it on, and leave it on 24/7 to effectively disrupt the mosquito breeding cycle. To set up your insect-free zone, we recommend placing your trap 3-6 ft off the ground and 20-40 ft away from areas of enjoyment.

bugs swarming near outdoor string lights

Why Choose Dynatrap®

At Dynatrap®, we want to provide you with backyard products that effectively keep flying insects away from you so you can enjoy the outdoors. If you’d like to get updates about the latest products, exclusive deals, and tips and tricks to make your backyard space pest-free, sign up for our e-newsletter.


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