One uncommon term, Nematocera, comprises several bugs you’ve likely heard of and some you may not. In this blog, we’ll answer the following questions concerning Nematocera:
- What kind of bug is a Nematocera?
- Is a Nematocera harmless?
- What attracts a Nematocera?
- How do I get rid of a Nematocera?
- Should I hire pest control to get rid of Nematocera?
What Kind of Bug is a Nematocera?
Nematocera is a suborder of insects within the order Diptera, also known as “long-horned.” (Diptera insects have one pair of wings). In appearance, they have elongated bodies with thin, segmented antennae and long legs.
Nematocera’s lower classification includes several types of flies, including:
- Black flies
- Crane flies
- Sciaridae (fungus gnats, dark-winged fungus gnats)
- Ceratopogonidae (biting midges)
- Psychodidae (moth flies, drain flies)
Is a Nematocera Harmless?
There are various species in the suborder Nematocera, some harmless and others not. Crane flies and gnats, for example, don’t bite or transmit diseases. They mainly feed on nectar and plant materials deeming them harmless to humans.
Other Nematocera species, like mosquitoes, can bite and feed on animals and humans. They’re responsible for over 1 million deaths each year through the spread of deadly diseases like malaria, yellow fever, and dengue.
Black flies can bite but aren’t known to transmit diseases. Other species can indirectly harm humans, such as sewer flies, whose decaying bodies can cause allergic reactions.
What Attracts a Nematocera?
Various factors may attract Nematocera to your home. They like certain smells, visuals, temperatures, lighting, and carbon dioxide.
- Smells. Nemotocera insects like the scent of flowers and decaying matter, and other sweet substances. They’ll seek these out in search of food sources, sometimes finding ways into your home.
- Visuals. There are specific visual cues that insects like mosquitoes are drawn to. Dark-colored objects and high contrasts between light and dark areas can attract species of Nematocera.
- Temperatures. Warm, humid environments with water sources and moisture are hotspots for bugs to lay their eggs.
- Lighting. Ultraviolet light can allure certain insects within the Nematocera subtype, like midges. It’s common to see swarms of them surrounding a porch light.
- Carbon dioxide. Specifically, mosquitoes and other bloodsuckers are highly sensitive to carbon dioxide (CO2). They can detect it in humans and animals from far away and seek out the potential host.
How Do I Get Rid of a Nematocera?
Nematocera insects become nuisances quickly, whether they bite or not. The key to eliminating them is locating their breeding site and destroying it. They’re typically near areas of open water like puddles, bird baths, and clogged gutters. You can use repellents to spray outdoor spaces with an infestation.
Indoors, remove any water sources that are attracting the bugs. Fix any clogged, leaky, or broken pipes contributing to built-up moisture. You can also use light and sticky traps to safely kill them without harming your home.
Should I Hire Pest Control to get Rid of Nematocera?
If you don’t see a decrease in the population of Nematocera after several at-home measures, a pest professional is your next option. Pest control specialists use special techniques to eliminate pests safely and effectively. You can also utilize regular pest control for upkeep and to prevent future infestations.