It is a member of the family of march flies, and the adult is a small, flying insect common to parts of Central America and the southeastern United States, especially along the Gulf Coast.
The thing about these Love Bugs, although harmless, is that they are a huge nuisance due to their body chemistry.
The male species of the Love Bug measures about 1/4 inch long and the female is 1/3 inch. Adult "couples" remain attached to one another during and after mating, even in flight, for up to several days.
The acidic make-up of the harmless but not-so-lovely bugs is what makes them a current contender for public enemy number one, in my opinion.
Because they can exist in large numbers near highways, they die - en masse - when they come into contact with our windshields, hoods and radiator grills at high speeds.
After washing my car recently, I was suddenly under attack the entire drive home. It sounded like a tiny machine gun shooting love bug bullets in rapid succession at my windshield - gross!
Apparently, if left for more than a couple of hours, the acidity of their, um, tiny love bug guts becomes extremely difficult to remove. The result: tiny pits and nicks in your automobile paint and chrome.
Another fact, they are attracted to light-colored surfaces, but I'm not suggesting you run out and paint your car black. There is hope!
The unlovely love bugs should be gone, hopefully, by the end of September. Sound the victory trumpets!
I realize they don't bite, they are incapable of it, but they feel so creepy when they land on you, especially if you've been sweating. And with the hot temperatures of late and the hundreds of massive swarms - it's likely their creepiness affects you on a daily basis.
Love bug season runs for about four weeks in May, then again in late August through September.
"They have to have enough moisture to keep the population growing," said LSU AgCenter entomologist Dr. Dale Pollet. "If you have cut grass and it stays there, that organic matter is what they feed on. They like rainfall, organic matter and heat."
So while the pesky love bugs will be around for another few weeks, consider the this scenario: they could actually be swarms of mosquitoes!
We love you, love bugs, after all.