Whether you are camping outdoors or tucked safely in your bedroom on the 20th floor, mosquitoes will find you. These bugs pursue their next blood meal without restrain.
It is almost as if you have a light bulb that signals your hiding place. Hold on a minute, that maybe it.
You may put all the necessary mosquito preventive measures in place, but make one mistake that leads these bugs right at your doorsteps. Lights act as a beacon to different bugs.
But can you use the light against mosquitoes? What color light repels mosquitoes? Let’s find out!
Are Mosquitoes Attracted to Light?
Light regulates the circadian rhythms, which is like a body clock allowing specific behaviors based on the time of the day. But why does light repel some insects while others attracted to it?
This difference is based on what is referred to as phototaxis. The term refers to how creatures react to light. Animals attracted to light have positive phototaxis, while those that move away from light have negative phototaxis.
Nocturnal organisms such as earthworms and cockroaches have negative phototaxis. On the contrary, most flying insects have an instinct to move and hover around the light.
Yes, mosquitoes use light, CO2, and body heat to locate their targets. However, they don’t perceive light as we do. Mosquitoes and other bugs can easily use the light from the stars and moon to reach their destination.
These natural light sources are far away, allowing the insects to maintain an angle. But with the artificial lights, the story is a bit complicated. The proximity of the light confuses the bugs.
As a result, the insects are unable to maintain the angle for clear navigation.
It is clear that mosquitoes use light to figure out their environment. However, they are more attracted to carbon dioxide, which their preys emit.
It explains why various mosquito traps are equipped with CO2 but not light.
Mosquitoes can bite both in darkness and light depending on the species and sex of the bug. Some mosquito species, such as the female anopheles’ mosquitoes are nocturnal.
They prefer to feed after sunset. For this reason, you should close windows and draw curtains at night to prevent the bugs from accessing your home.
Other mosquito species such as Aedes aegypti are active during the day. Diurnal mosquitos rest at night when there isn’t enough light to hunt prey.
Related reading: How to find a mosquito in your room.
Keep in mind that mosquitoes can still bite even while resting. Always have preventive measures to keep yourself safe from these intruders.
Mosquitoes avoid direct sunlight exposure to escape dehydration and even possible death. These biters can remain active until midmorning when the temperature starts rising.
They look for a hideout to escape the heat. Your house provides a conducive breeding ground, thanks to the dark corridors, wet bathrooms, and kitchens.
So, are mosquitoes attracted to light or dark-colored clothes? Mosquitoes like it when you wear dark-colored clothes, especially against a light-colored background.
It makes it easy for the bugs to get their food source.
Related reading: What diseases do mosquitoes carry ?
What Color Light Repels Mosquitoes?
Imagine the possibility of controlling mosquito infestation without using the harsh chemicals that present harm to the environment.
Given the danger that mosquitoes pose to people, various innovations are developed to keep them at bay.
For a while now, pest control professionals have advised people on different color lights to repel mosquitoes. Still wondering how this works? Let’s dive deeper!
The UV lights
Various research studies shows that insects are attracted to ultraviolet light, which explains how bug zappers work.
Typically, the device uses UV light to attract bugs, which are then killed by electric shock. Note that a light’s UV output affects its attractiveness to insects.
Usually, humans see light wavelengths in a spectrum ranging from 400-800 nanometers except for ultraviolet light (350 nm). Bugs can see the light between the range of 300-650nm.
However, they prefer a capacity of 300-420 nm, including UV light. Mosquitoes can see the UV light but are not attracted by it. The bloody thirsty insects know that they can’t find food by following the UV light.
Studies show that mosquito traps that emit carbon dioxide are by far more effective than those using UV light.
Generally, insects perceive three colors of light consisting of blue, ultraviolet, and green. Most LED lights are designed to emit one color of the light spectrum.
It makes it easy to design them to produce a specific color that has a unique function. While mosquitoes find bluish or bright white lights appealing, they don’t like yellow, orange, or pinkish lights.
The brightness of LED lights depends on the amount of current passing through the bulb. Most LED lights don’t emit UV lights in addition to releasing little heat. These aspects make them even less attractive to insects.
Related reading: Does deodorant attract mosquitoes
Frequently Asked Questions
Q1: Are mosquitoes attracted to blue light?
Mosquitoes, just like other bugs, favor blue lights because they are easy to see. However, nocturnal mosquitoes may avoid blue lights during the day.
Q2: Are mosquitoes attracted to LED light?
Most LED lights emit little to no UV light. Furthermore, they produce little energy and are usually manufactured in warm yellowish colors. All these features make them unattractive to mosquitoes.
Q3: Are mosquitoes attracted to UV light?
Yes, Many insects seem to be attracted to UV light. However, this light does not seem to draw in mosquitoes as other bugs. It is unlikely to get rid of these critters with bug zappers.
When it comes to explaining what color light repels mosquitoes, the answer is warm colors. Colors come in different wavelengths, and insects have a smaller visible spectrum than us.
This means that yellow, red, and orange hues are undetectable to most bugs plus mosquitoes.
It is safe to say that light doesn’t necessarily attract nor repel mosquitoes but rather disorient them. Certain kinds of lights based on their color, brightness level, and heat emitted could make your home less visible or more appealing to mosquitoes.
Knowing how mosquitoes react to short-wavelength light allows the development of new safe alternatives for controlling dangerous insects.
Related reading: Smells mosquitoes don’t like