Outdoor Lighting Strategy
To Control Night Flying Insects

By Don and David Gilbert


Different types of light contain different amounts of the UV energy (or ultraviolet light) which is extremely attractive to the vast majority of (photo-positive) night flying insects. Knowing which type of light attracts which species of insects enables one to strategically choose and locate lighting that will reduce the number of insects attracted into a facility.

The idea is not to simply choose the least attractive light to use, but to strategically place less attractive lights where you don't want insects and more attractive lights where you would rather they go. For example, place less attractive lights in and around entrances and more attractive lights away from the entrances.

In the early 1960s, at the time my father, Don Gilbert, pionerred the industrial use of ILTs (Insect Light Traps) in food plants, pharmaceutical laboratories, etc.; High Pressure Soduim vapor lights (HPS) were the less attractive light and clear mercury vapor the most attractive (metal halide also attracted more than HPS).


In a field next to a food plant in Kansas, Don Gilbert set up a test similar to the illustration (at right). The lights were further apart, perhaps 100 feet apart and 3' x 4' electric grids were placed adjacent to each light. Electrocuted insects fell onto white bed sheets placed below the lights, then weighed since there were too many to count. The results were approximately 200 to 1, clear mercury vapor to high pressure sodium.

LED lights add an entirely new consideration to the research starved strategy.

(Under Construction)