Ladybugs are common insects found throughout North America. They feed on aphids and other plant pests. Ladybugs are also known as ladybird beetles because they look similar to ladybirds (ladybugs).
There are over 400 species of ladybugs worldwide. The most common types include the black ground beetle, the red imported fire ant, the green lacewing, the brown marmorated stink bug, the Asian ladybeetle, the American ladybeetle, and the Mexican bean beetle.
Ladybug Life Cycle
The life cycle of a ladybug is divided into four stages: egg, larva, pupa, and adult.
When a female lays an egg, it will be attached to the underside of leaves or twigs. The eggs can take anywhere from one day to two weeks to hatch. Once hatched, the larvae will eat their way out of the egg shell and begin eating the leaf or twig where the egg was laid.
After hatching from the egg, the larvae will continue to eat until they reach the size of a pinhead. Larvae may live for up to three months in this stage. At this point, the larvae will molt several times before becoming adults.
Once the larvae have reached the size of a pin-head, they will enter a pupal stage. This is when the body changes shape and hardens. After about five days, the pupae will emerge as an adult.
The last stage of development is the adult stage. Adults usually measure between 2/3 and 1 inch long. Adults do not eat but rather hunt for food. Females lay eggs that are then eaten by the larvae. Males die after mating with females.
Types of Ladybugs
Black Ground Beetle
This type of ladybug has a dark coloration and lives in wooded areas. Black ground beetles are native to the United States.
Red Imported Fire Ant
These ants are large and very aggressive. Red imported fire ants are native to South America.
These small ladybugs are often seen flying around gardens. Green lacewings are native to Europe and Asia.
Brown Marmorated Stink Bug
Brown marmorated stink bugs are native to East Asia. These bugs are attracted to light and can cause severe damage to crops.
These ladybugs are native to Asia. They are sometimes called “green” ladybugs because of their coloring.
These ladybugs are native to North America. They are commonly referred to as “red” ladybugs because of the coloration on their backs.
Mexican Bean Beetles
Mexican bean beetles are native to Mexico and Central America. They are considered beneficial insects since they prey upon crop pests such as corn rootworms and tomato hornworms.
How to Identify Ladybugs
To identify a ladybug, you must first determine its sex. Female ladybugs are larger than males. Male ladybugs are smaller and more slender.
To distinguish between different types of ladybugs, you need to examine the coloration on their bodies. Black ground beetles have a darker coloration than other types of ladybugs.
Another way to tell if a ladybug is male or female is to look at the abdomen. If the abdomen is oval shaped, it is likely a female. A rounder abdomen indicates a male.
What Are Their Habits?
Ladybugs spend much of their lives searching for food. Some ladybugs migrate from place to place while others stay near where they were born.
Ladybugs move around by walking with their legs spread out. They use their antennae to detect smells and vibrations.
Ladybugs are nocturnal creatures. They hide during the day and emerge at night to search for food.
What do Ladybugs eat?
Ladybugs feed on a variety of plant species including beans, cabbage, tomatoes, cucumbers, squash, and peppers. They also consume aphids, whiteflies, thrips, spider mites, caterpillars, and other insect pests.
Where Do Ladybugs Live?
Ladybugs prefer to live in warm climates. In colder regions, they may hibernate during winter. Ladybugs are most active during spring and fall.
Ladybugs are found throughout the world except Antarctica.
How Long Do Ladybugs Live?
Ladybirds can live for two years. However, many of them only live one year. The life span of a ladybird varies depending on the environment.
Do Ladybugs Bite?
Yes, ladybugs can sting. When threatened, ladybugs release a chemical known as aposematic warning coloration. This helps them warn predators that they contain harmful chemicals.
If you see a ladybug crawling across your skin, gently brush it off. It will leave behind a drop of liquid containing an irritant.
Are Ladybugs Poisonous to People?
No, ladybugs are not poisonous to people. However, some people may be allergic to them.
Are they poisonous to pets or livestock?
Some people believe that ladybugs are poisonous to dogs, cats, and horses. However, this is not true. Ladybugs are actually beneficial to these animals.
Ladybugs help control populations of fleas, ticks, and mosquitoes. They also keep down populations of spiders and ants.
What Attracts Ladybugs?
Many people think that ladybugs are attracted to bright lights. That’s true, but there are several reasons why they fly toward light. First, they use the light to navigate. Second, the light helps them see potential mates. Third, some types of ladybugs are attracted to certain colors. For example, red imported fire ants are attracted to green light.
How to Get Rid of Ladybugs
You can try to eliminate ladybugs by using pesticides. You should be careful when applying these chemicals. It is best to spray them outdoors where the ladybugs will be exposed to the chemical.
If you don’t want to use pesticides, you can attract ladybugs with food. You can spread out pet food on your lawn. This will help attract ladybugs. Also, you can place bowls of water near plants. Ladybugs like damp environments so this could work well.
If you find ladybugs crawling around your home, you can kill them with a vacuum cleaner. Vacuums are great tools for removing bugs from homes.
What is the most common ladybug?
The most common type of ladybug is the black ground beetle. There are about 1,000 species of ladybugs worldwide.
Can you keep a ladybug as a pet?
Yes, you can keep a ladybug as long as you provide it with proper care. Keep it in a terrarium or aquarium. Provide it with a diet of crickets, mealworms, or fruit flies. Clean its enclosure regularly.
Ladybugs are beneficial insects. They eat pest insects such as aphids and spider mites. They are easy to care for and maintain. They are also attractive to children. These characteristics make them perfect pets.