Science Bloggers for Students DonorsChoose Challenge

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Urban Wildlife Watch: Lady Bugs

Lady Beetles or Lady Bugs as I call them are the best of the beetles. That’s my opinion. As a young child I was actually afraid of bugs. I was such a typical girl, all panicky if one landed on my head. I out grew that, thankfully. But I was never freaked out by Lady Bugs. They were pretty and dainty and had no stingers or scary mouth parts. That’s what freaked me out about most other bugs – they caused pain.

It is autumn and you may notice that these a lot of these little beetles everywhere. Or you may notice them near your windows and on your screens. In side of warm, climate controlled buildings are perfect places to overwinter. If they are becoming a nuisance, simply sweep them out, but don’t kill them. Lady Bugs are beneficial bugs. They prey of garden pests that do damage to your vegetables and flowers. The orange colored lady-beetles are actually the Asian Lady Beetle which was purposely introduced by the USDA in 1979. Lately, these are the lady bugs I see trying to get inside of buildings.
image credit: Iowa State University Ag Extension

Lady Beetles overwinter in very large colonies and keep each other warm. They hibernate, together in the leaf litter or under rocks – any place safe. When they emerge in the spring, it is time for love. All of that cozying up over winter makes it a little easier for male and female lady beetles to find each other and start the circle of life all over again. More detailed info about Lady Beetles here.
This lady beetle hitched a ride on my car from Racine, Wisconsin. As I was loading up and saying goodbye to my parents, I noticed this lady bug on the back door of my car. When I got out of the car in Milwaukee (north of Racine) to visit more family, I notice this little guy (or gal) was still hanging on. I had no idea these beetles were so tenacious. I’m not sure if it departed in Milwaukee or somewhere else along my route. But it sure is a fine example of how Sweepstakes Dispersal works.


lisaschaos said...

They have been out in fierce numbers lately! Can you believe one bit me a week or so ago?! I had no idea they'd bite!

Hey, Racine, I've been there a few times. :)

DNLee said...

I heard that they do that sometimes. Good thing that never happened to me as a child or that would ended my adoration of the cute bugs.

MB said...

i thik this is the kind of post that would be great for the qbg blog! check it out at we'd love to have more bloggers. also you are so welcome to submit to the zine! and please join us on the ning site! there's a link on the blog and the facebook. so glad you want to be about it!

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