Why Are Love Bugs Stuck Together?

Why Are Love Bugs Stuck Together?

The love bug (Plecia nearctica), also known as the honeymoon fly and the double-headed bug, is not actually a bug at all. It is actually a species of march fly and more closely related to biting midges and mosquitoes. These nuisance pests are found in parts of Central America and the Southeast United States, especially along the Gulf Coast.

Love bugs are small, about 1/4″ in length with black bodies and red heads. While it is very rare to see them in larval form, adult love bugs are very recognizable as they are almost always seen as a pair, with the male and female joined tail to tail. So why are the love bugs stuck together? The answer is simple. They are mating. Adult females will emerge and live 3 to 4 days, just long enough to mate before they die. Because of this, they must stick together at all time.

There are 2 major flights of love bugs during the year. The spring flight is usually from April to May and the summer flight is from August to September. Each flight lasts about 5 weeks.

While love bugs can be extremely annoying, especially if you are driving in the southern states, they are not capable of biting or stinging and pose no health threats to humans or other animals. They are also not known to transmit any diseases. They do cause other problems, however. Love bugs are attracted to the gas that is emitted from automobiles and will often congregate in large numbers near highways. This causes them to be killed in large numbers on car hoods, grills, and windshields. If left for too long, dead love bugs can cause damage to car paint, obstruct windshields, and even clog radiator passages and grills, causing mechanical issues and engines to overheat. These pests also thrive in humid environments so they can be found in basements, attics, and storage rooms, and even on flowers or in flower beds with high moisture content.

While your best bet is to just let them run their course, there are a few ways you can eliminate love bugs or deter them from your car or home.

  1. Clean Your Car. Wash your car often with warm soapy water, especially if there are dead love bugs stuck to it. Wax your car prior to mating season to make it harder for them to stick to the exterior.
  2. Eliminate Standing Water. Inspect your home and yard for any areas of standing water and get rid of them. This will also help with mosquitoes. Monitor your home’s humidity levels, as well.
  3. Natural Repellents. You can try natural repellent sprays made from essential oils such as peppermint. to repel love bugs.
  4. Clean Up The Yard. Keep the grass mowed and shrubbery trimmed. Clear any debris from the yard, especially anything that can hold moisture.
  5. Vacuum. The best way to get rid of live love bugs that may be swarming around your home is to vacuum them up.

While love bugs don’t pose any significant threat to humans, they can be a nuisance. If you have an issue with love bugs or any other pest, contact a professional pest control company for assistance.


You May Also Be Interested In:

Everything You Need to Know About “Murder Hornets”

Keeping Wildlife in the Wild

How to Identify 5 of the Most Common Cockroaches in Georgia

Avoid Bites and Stings this Summer

Summer Without Bed Bug Worry


5 Bugs to Love

Valentine’s Day is a day of LOVE!  Bugs aren’t something that we usually “love” but in the spirit of the holiday, here are 5 bugs to love!

  1. Ladybugs are not only one of the cuter bugs out there but they are beneficial because they eat large quantities of aphids, mites and other arthropods that feed on various plants in your yard or garden. Imported more than 100 years ago to defend orchards and orange groves, ladybugs can eat up to 5,000 pests in their lifetime.
  2. Earthworms are nature’s most efficient composters.  These scavengers create the kind of well-aerated, humus-rich soil gardeners call “black gold.”
  3. The love bug is also known as the honeymoon fly, kissing bug, or double-headed bug.  The adult is a small, flying insect common to the southeastern United States, especially along the Gulf Coast.  During and after mating, adult pairs remain coupled, even in flight, for up to several days.
  4. The praying mantis is named for the “praying” position that it often assumes.  This insect will eat just about any living thing it can fit in its mouth, helpful or not. It is known to consume mosquitoes, nocturnal moths, bees, beetles, small lizards, even frogs—as well as fellow praying mantises.
  5. Bumblebees collect nectar and the pollen that will make tomato plants and apple trees produce more fruit.  The female bumblebee can sting but they much prefer to stick to gentler business.

Pin It on Pinterest

Call Now Button