Taking road trips is GREAT! That is, until you get to your destination and you have to scrape all those kamikaze bugs off the front of your car. They’re called Plecia nearctica – also known as “lovebugs.” Because they just LOOOOVE to dirty up your windshield.
The males are about a quarter of an inch long, and the females are a little longer. But 70% of the females’ bodies are ovaries – so they hold about 350 eggs. Which is why they make more of a mess when they splatter. So, here’s how to help you avoid a lovebug massacre on your car this summer. These tips come from Ken Gioeli, a natural resources agent for the University of Florida:
- Drive at night. Lovebugs reach peak activity between 10AM and 5PM and stop flying at dusk.
- Guard your grille. Put a screen in front of the grill to keep the bugs from clogging your radiator.
- Time is your enemy! When it comes to those splattered bugs, wash them off as soon as possible. If you wait until they’re dried and baked on from the sun, it could ruin your paint.
- Wax your car. It makes it easier to clean.
- Oil it down! Spreading a coat of baby oil on your vehicle will make for easy insect removal.