Multicolored Asian Ladybird Beetle

(Harmonia axyridis Pallas)

Introduction: Multicolored Asian Ladybird Beetles, also known as ladybugs, come in a stunning array of colors and patterns. They are usually red or orange with black spots, and the shield-like region (Pronotum) directly behind the head has a black M-shaped marking on a white background. They have a distinctive shape which is broadly oval to nearly spherical.

Habits: As the name suggests, Asian ladybugs are not from the Southeast U.S. While our native ladybug species spend the winter in brush piles, behind the bark of trees, or in other natural shelters, Asian ladybugs have an unfortunate tendency to seek out light-colored structures in which to hibernate. It is not uncommon for tens of thousands of beetles to congregate in attics, ceilings and wall voids. Once inside, they plan to go dormant, but houses are too warm and they fly around, confused that it might be springtime. If a home has suffered with ladybugs before, you’ll likely suffer with them every year unless you can determine how they are infiltrating your home. If you have ever disturbed an Asian ladybug and noticed it left a brown stain on your hands or on a surface, you might be surprised at what the liquid is. Ladybugs can exude a foul-smelling, yellow defensive chemical from their leg joints, a process called reflex bleeding.

Control: If ladybugs are assaulting your home, you have two options that should be used together:

  • Rid them from the inside of the home.
  • Prevent them from getting inside the home.

 

Large clusters in the home can be removed by using a vacuum. Try to avoid touching them, as they can stain surfaces through reflex bleeding. On the outside of the home, mechanical exclusion seems to be a great form of control to keep Asian lady beetles from entering. Cracks around windows, doors, siding, utility pipes, behind chimneys, underneath the wood fascia and other openings should be sealed with high quality silicone or silicone-latex caulk. Damaged screens on doors and windows should be repaired or replaced. Attics, fireplace chimneys, and exhaust vents should be covered with number 20 (or smaller) screen mesh. Utilizing a professional treatment is the best method to reduce and help prevent a large infestation of ladybugs. Cook’s Pest Control offers expert treatment for the reduction and exclusion of ladybugs. Our pest management professionals are thoroughly trained to address your pest problems.

About Multicolored Asian Ladybird Beetles

  • Most ladybugs are voracious predators of damaging plant pests – a single ladybug can devour several thousand aphids within its relatively short lifetime.
  • While not aggressive to humans, ladybugs reflex bleed on surfaces when disturbed leaving behind a small stain.
  • Common entry points to the home for ladybugs include gaps or holes in exterior doors, windows, window screen tears, and pet doors.