COLLEGE STATION - Customers are keeping the Wolf Creek Car Wash in College Station quite busy these days.
One customer says her vehicle was splattered with a swarm of love bugs as she was traveling from the Houston area. "I was coming home from Friendswood and I ran into a pile of them."
General Manager Danny Keeling says they've seen a number of cars come in with the pesky insects stuck to the front of fenders. "If it's on for a little while, the bug has some kind of acid in it and it will bubble the paint or make it to where when you go to scrub it off it rubs the paint off with it."
Love bugs are flies that emerge during the spring and and again in late summer to early fall in the southern states.
Dr. Robert Puckett, a professor and extension entomologist for Texas A&M says the insects are harmless and the love sessions between the insects are brief. "The females lay a lot of eggs. Several hundred eggs for each female that makes it through the mating process. What we see is a period of emergence and mating over a course of a week or so then we will taper off and you won't see anymore of the adults for a long while."
Puckett says while the love bugs are a nuisance around our homes and vehicles, in nature they're quite beneficial. "They're feeding on the decaying organic matter and returning those nutrients to the soil to the ecosystem itself."
As for your vehicle, Keeling suggests waxing your vehicle after washing. He also says his customers have put baby oil across the front, so the pests won't stick.