- Color: brightly colored, typically red, brown, or tan with black spots; some are black with red spots.
- Size: 1/16 to 1/4 long
- Adults are hemispherical in shape.
- Larvae are flattened and spindle-shaped with warts or spines on the dorsal (i.e., back) side.
Habits of Ladybugs:
- Eggs are orange and are laid on end in single or multiple groups of 12 on plants infested with aphids.
- In the fall, adults seek protected areas in which to overwinter. Preferred areas are beneath rocks, bark, leaves, landscape timbers; however, occupied structures are also suitable.
- They are beneficial because the larvae and adults eat a variety of outdoor ornamental pests, e.g., aphids, mealybugs, whiteflies, scale, other soft bodied insects and their eggs.
- Adults are attracted to light and often are seen in window sills and light fixtures.
Damage From Ladybugs:
- In the fall, the adults become a nuisance when they emerge from their hibernation sites in walls and fly around the house.
- They pose no threat to health and property.
- Aphids, scale, and other soft-bodied insects on exterior plants that serve as ladybug prey.
How to Control Ladybugs:
- Exclusion is the best method of control and can be accomplished by sealing external cracks, gaps in siding, and openings around door and window frames.
- Similar areas on the inside of the house should be sealed to prevent ladybugs from entering the interior from wall voids and voids between floors.
- Screens should fit tightly and un-screened doors and windows should not be left open.
- Soffit and ridge vents which are also points of entry should also be screened.
- Once beetles are inside, the best course of action is to use a vacuum cleaner for removal, and then remove, tape and discard the vacuum bag, or release the beetles outside away from the house.
- Light traps can be used effectively in some situations in order to reduce indoor infestations.
- Spraying indoors for these beetles is of no value and provides little relief from the problem.