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As the weather heats up, more bugs start to appear — both outside and inside your home. But instead of running for a tissue or shoe, reaching for a catch-and-release bug trapper may be a better solution. The best ones do exactly what they sound like they do: They can trap a bug and safely release it back outdoors (or let you study it for a bit before setting it free).
If you’re starting to see bugs around your indoor space, you might want to consider stocking up on the handy tool, which can be kept anywhere around the house within reach. Here’s everything you should know to choose the best.
Catch-and-Release Bug Trapper Buying Guide
From built-in LED lights to special design features you should consider, here are all the features to look at when shopping for the best bug trapper for your home.
Design: Most bug trappers feel lightweight, which is perfect for quickly grabbing one when you see a critter. Having a tight chamber means the bug can’t escape while trapped, and one with clear sides means you can view the insect and make sure it’s inside, without having to guess if you got it. A removable chamber lets you disconnect it from the trigger unit, quickly letting your new multi-legged friend back out into the yard, no harm done.
Lights and Power: A built-in LED light is another feature you may see when shopping. It’s a big help for nighttime, especially in summer when porch lights attract large insects that can slip inside when the screen door swings open. These are often battery-powered trappers, and a lit-up magnifying glass is a great tool for kids that want to examine interesting bugs inside, or even ones that they find outdoors. The devices make it easy so you can safely check out the bugs with no risk once they’re trapped, before letting them go.
Uses Outside the Home: If you have a garden and are dealing with an invasive species or pests eating your plants, this can be an alternative to harmful poisons and insecticides. For those who live in a climate with venomous insects that can sting and bite like scorpions and spiders, these put some distance between you and them, minimizing the risk they pose. These also come in handy for classrooms and offices too, where a buzzing bug can be an annoying distraction. Another use is for pet owners with snakes or reptiles that require a feeding of live bugs. Having a bug vacuum on hand makes dropping crickets or whatever live insect their diet calls for into their enclosure a whole lot easier and cleaner.
What Are the Best Catch-and-Release Bug Trappers?
Here are our top picks for the best bug trappers you can buy online this season.
1. My Critter Catcher Spider & Insect Catcher (2 Pack)
This is simple enough for kids to use, and the trigger doesn’t require much pressure to activate the brush. At 4 feet, the long arm also puts a good amount of distance between you and the bug. The brushes are gentle on even the most delicate insect, and this is ideal for anyone with a severe fear of spiders or any creepy crawlers that find their way into the house.
2. Carson BugView Quick-Release Bug Catching Tool and Magnifier
Carson’s BugView has a built-in magnifying glass, so kids (and adults) can check out bugs up close and examine their details, colors and movements with no risk. The lens brings bugs into focus, and works great as an outside tool for removing garden bugs or for kids that want to explore the backyard. The mechanism here is designed to work with just a quick slide of your thumb for scooping up bugs and releasing them just as fast.
3. Nature Bound Bug Catcher
While this Nature Bound bug catcher is marketed with kids in mind, it still works just as well for adults who want to swiftly remove bugs and release them outdoors. Kids can take this on walks and hikes, safely studying spiders and small critters, then letting them go without harm. There’s also a battery-powered LED light for nightly use, and though it can handle spiders and beetles, this works best for smaller bugs.
4. Sonic BugBuster
The suction on the Sonic operates from a 9V battery with an on/off switch, and though it’s not that powerful, at the right 45-degree angle, it can suck up small medium-sized bugs, even against a window. Once they’re in the chamber, just lift off the tight safety cap to set them free outdoors. This also has a built-in flashlight for keeping your eye on a fast-crawling bug to make sure it doesn’t get away in the dark.