Recent research which was undertaken by scientists within the University of Bristol has shown that LED lighting isn’t very attractive to insects – and this could be incredibly beneficial for us.
It appears that nuisance insects, such as biting midges and mosquitoes are much more attracted to traditional filament lamps than LEDs. They’ve hypothesized that this is likely due to filament lamps giving off heat whilst they’re on. Insects like mosquitoes use thermal cues to find unsuspecting warm hosts in the night – so having filament bulbs in or outside your home during the evening likely invites them in for a feast!
The study showed that LEDs attracted four times as few insects in comparison to the filament bulb. The statistics also revealed that only 2-3% of the 4,000 insects in the study favoured the LED lighting. This is a rather huge difference and it's likely more future research will experiment with LED lighting.
This is not only good news for those of us who are tired of waking up to a large quantity of very irritating bug bites during the summer – it could also reduce the spread of deadly diseases.
We’ve all heard of the Zika virus in the news. This often fatal disease is spread through mosquito bites – which if you’ve been to countries in warmer climates, are incredibly and unfortunately easy to obtain. Other fatal viruses carried by mosquitoes are malaria, yellow fever and dengue fever.
If LED lighting is used more frequently outside and inside of homes, fewer mosquitoes carrying deadly viruses will be attracted to them. LED strip lights can be used throughout the home, and are often very customisable with the colouring. For outdoor use, LED rope lights could be used to colourfully light your garden, as well as deterring those pesky biting insects.
This is also a great result for the environment and our pockets, as LED lights have incredible energy saving properties.