What Attracts Water Bugs and How to Prevent Them
Knowing what attracts water bugs will also help you to keep them from causing you problems.
As the name suggests water bugs are aquatic insects, and are often mistaken for cockroaches due to similar appearance. Their wings and hairy legs are enough to make them look intimidating. But what really makes them frightening is the fact that they can inject venom through their bite.
Not only does this cause excruciating pain, but asthma and other allergies, specifically in children and adults allergic to those toxins.
Despite the potential dangers water bugs pose, we often take them lightly because it is a common misconception they inhabit only water bodies. This is not true at all. Despite being aquatic insects, what attracts water bugs may surprise you, and might even result in them inhabiting your house!
The following are some key elements of what attracts water bugs, and the necessary precautions to prevent them:
What Attracts Water Bugs?
The first and most obvious element that attracts water bugs since they are aquatic insects. They prefer not just large bodies of water like rivers, lakes, and ponds, but also can be found in or near standing water or damp places.
This includes ponds in your garden as well as leaking water faucets and pipes in your kitchen and washroom. If there is any sign of water accumulation indoors or outdoors, water bugs are likely to get lured to it. They don’t even require large amounts of water to thrive. Any amount of water, no matter how little, is sufficient to keep a water bug alive.
Water bugs often get lured in by bright lights. This has to lead to them alternatively referred to as electric light bugs. Therefore, they often gravitate towards brightly lit things and places such as porches, parking lots, street lights, and neon signs.
If your garden has some bright night lamps, water bugs are likely to be spotted around them. The reason for this infatuation with bright lights is because they prefer warmer temperatures that range from 70 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit. Since bright lights provide warmth, water bugs are naturally attracted to them.
Rotting Organic Matter
The typical menu of a water bug comprises an assortment of creatures like crustaceans, crickets, tadpoles, and fish. However, this isn’t sufficient to satiate their hunger as water bugs will eat almost anything they stumble across.
They will devour rotten and dead leaves and other decaying materials such as insects and plants. This makes an unkempt garden the ideal place for water bugs to inhabit. Also, they will be found lurking about trash bins around your house. Trash not disposed of properly in bags are quite likely to be the feast call for water bugs to your house.
Sweet and Starchy Food
Their feasting doesn’t stop with other insects, animals, rotting plants, and organic matter. They are also lured in by sweet and starchy food. From potatoes to sweet and juicy fruits like peaches, water bugs won’t even hesitate to drink up beer and wine! Surprisingly, their hunt for a meal doesn’t even end at this particular point.
Since they have a liking for starch, they will devour almost anything that is composed of it including paper, a wallpaper’s back, and even clothing!
How to Prevent Water Bugs?
Water bugs are potentially dangerous pests that could inhabit your house. This calls for some preventive measures that should be taken to keep yourself and your loved ones safe.
Now that we know what attracts water bugs here are some of the most effective ways to keep them from coming into your house:
Seal Potential Entries
Water bugs can find their way inside your house from the smallest of crevices in your walls and windows. Additionally, holes in the ground or cracks in the water pipes can also serve as doorways for water bugs. Inspect your house for such cracks and holes and seal them up with cement, plaster of Paris or some other sealant-like material.
Fix All Water Leakages
Since the smallest volume of water is enough to keep a water bug alive, inspect your house for any sources of water leakage. From leaky faucets and pipes in the kitchen to a leaky water hose, you need to fix them all. Replace the pipes if the need arises, and ensure they don’t have any cracks that would cause water leakage.
Related Article: How to Get Rid of Water Bugs in the Swimming Pool
Dispose of Your Trash Properly and Regularly
A clean environment is the least ideal place where water bugs are likely to make themselves at home. Therefore, dispose of your trash properly and regularly. This includes disposing of your leftovers, fruit, and vegetables, as well as all other organic waste in proper trash bags.
Once you’re ready to dispose of the trash bags secure them with a tight knot, so the trash remains covered inside. Also, don’t prolong taking out your trash since any accumulating trash could be a feast call for nearby water bugs.
Store Food Properly
Store all of your food in the fridge or proper containers with lids. Make sure no food is exposed to air. Also, clean your table, wash your dishes, and dust off any food particles from the clothes and bed right away. Usually, children tend to munch on snacks in their beds, so make sure they either eat them elsewhere or you clean their rooms right away.
Keep Your Garden Clean
Accumulating leaves, decaying or damp wood, and compost make up the ideal environment for water bugs.
Make sure your garden is clean and tidy by clearing away any damp wood or compost that may attract water bugs.
Use Bug Repellents
Bug repellents are an effective precautionary measure against water bugs. You can either dilute some boric acid (500 grams for instance) with water (250 ml) or get a commercial bug repellent.
Also, you can dilute alcohol or liquid detergent in water or use vinegar or cooking oil in isolation. Spraying the repellent on potential areas where water bugs are likely to be effective in preventing their entry into your house. Spray it in your doorways, kitchen, washrooms, and even on the trees and bushes.
Despite inhabiting water bodies, there are many factors that can attract water bugs inside your home. So, you must employ the necessary preventive measures to guard yourself against them. As long as you keep your house and garden clean and tidy water bugs won’t have much reason to infiltrate your surroundings.
More Articles About Water Bugs:
- Do Water Bugs Bite or Cause Disease?
- Facts About Water Bugs
- The Life Cycle of Water Bugs
- What Attracts Water Bugs and How to Prevent Them
- How to Get Rid of Water Bugs in the Swimming Pool
- Roles of Water Bugs in the Ecosystem
- Types of Water Bugs
- Giant Water Bug: The Beast of Pests
- How to Get Rid Of Water Bugs