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Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About Ladybugs

Ladybugs are an interesting lot. Prized for their beauty and noted around the world as good luck, these tiny bugs are out in full swing this spring. So, are ladybugs a blessing or a curse? As it turns out, as long as they don’t swarm, ladybugs are a friend to your garden and sometimes act as natural pest control.

Ladybugs eat aphids and aphids are a gardener’s worst nightmare. Eating everything from tomatoes to roses, aphids are pests. Ladybugs aren’t poisonous to humans but eating too many of them can harm some small animals – hence their red “stay away!” color!

There are over 500 different kinds of ladybugs in the US alone, most of which looks similar. The insects actually got their name during the Middle Ages in Europe – farmers whose crops were being destroyed by aphids prayed to the Virgin Mary to protect them…in came ladybugs to eat the aphids and the nickname “The Beetle of Our Lady.” The rest is history.

Ladybugs enter homes because they’re drawn by the change in temperature. They actually prefer humid, moist conditions and don’t thrive indoors. In fact, when you find a dead ladybug inside your home it’s likely the insect died of dehydration. They won’t be destructive as they don’t eat paper, fabric, or human food. It’s best to remove the ladybug safely outdoors or to let them find their own way out.

If you truly have a ladybug infestation, you may want to call a pest control professional. Ladybugs don’t have permanent homes and sometimes lay eggs inside human dwellings. They can be hard to get rid of and though they’re not poisonous they can leave icky yellow markings where they lay (it’s not refuse but blood.) Sometimes a large-scale ladybug infestation can mean you’ve got a major aphid problem which can be greatly reduced by chemical pesticides.

Ladybugs are a food source for all sorts of animals. From birds to frogs to other bugs, all types of fauna feast on the prettiest of insects. In all likelihood, if you see a lot of ladybugs around your home, you’re going to have another insect problem of some sort. Ladybugs in and of themselves aren’t a bad sign…it’s what they bring along that is.

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