Infestation Of Lady Bugs?
It’s an age-old tale: ladybugs bring luck to those they land on, but what happens when there’s more than one? Turns out you may not be so lucky. Ladybugs have been known to swarm in groups of 15,000 or more, invading homes and other properties. Large numbers of these bugs can begin to wreak havoc on homeowners and have also been known to cause allergic reactions in some individuals. While ladybug infestations cause no immediate damage, it can be a frustrating situation as they may stain certain fabrics upon their presence. In this article you’ll be able to identify the two types of ladybugs, what to look for, and how to keep them out.
First let us take a look at the difference between ladybugs and lady beetles.
Ladybugs and lady beetles are the two types of pests you may see in and around your home, but they have some differences you should be aware of.
The Different Types Of Lady Bugs
Common ladybugs are your typical ladybug. They are a small round bug that is red in color with black spots. Ladybugs will have solid black heads with two white dots on either side of the head. These ladybugs are helpful as they feed on plant eating insects that may be on your property. The common ladybug often isn’t the culprit for ladybug infestations as they prefer places such as forests, grassy areas and other spots with debris.
ASIAN LADY BEETLE
Asian lady beetles are often referred to as “ladybugs” as they are very similar in appearance to the common ladybug. Asian ladybugs range in color from yellow to orange to red. You are able to identify lady beetles apart from the common ladybug by the distinct white marking on their heads. Lady beetles have an “M” shaped mark on their heads. Asian lady beetles tend to look for warm environments to hibernate during the winter months and thus make up the majority of most ladybug infestations.
Ladybugs tend to enter our homes in order to stay warm during the colder winter months. Just like humans these pests want to be comfortable and cozy until springtime.
Unlike the common ladybug, lady beetles tend to be a bit more aggressive and are known to bite if they land on you. Asian lady beetles can also pose a potential threat to your pets. If a dog ingests this bug they could potentially suffer from chemical burns along the dogs mouth down to the digestive tract. This is because the bug releases a chemical when they feel threatened. The chemicals released by this bug have a distinct odor that can linger for weeks even when cleaned.
Although ladybugs are not known to carry disease, they can cause allergic reactions in certain individuals. These reactions can occur if the bug is nearby or comes in contact with the skin. Allergic reactions will manifest themselves in the presence of itchy skin, hives, coughing, red and itchy eyes, and wheezing.
WHAT TO LOOK FOR TO IDENTIFY LADY BUG INFESTATIONS
Ladybugs seek out warmth so will tend to be drawn to light-colored homes or areas with direct sunlight. Oftentimes they will be gathered around a window but can be found in other parts of the house. Ceilings, foundations, door jams, and cracks along the siding are all places where ladybugs have been known to congregate. It is possible that you may not notice a ladybug infestation until temperatures begin to rise and the bugs begin to awaken.
Another sign of a ladybug infestation is from the staining these bugs can leave behind. Ladybug blood can leave yellow-colored staining on fabrics such as drapes and carpeting. These stains can also be found on areas around windows as well as walls and can be quite difficult to remove.
Taking steps to prevent a ladybug infestation can be time consuming, but it will leave you with peace of mind knowing you’ll be stopping a headache down the road. Here are some ways you can prevent ladybugs from calling your space home:
- Trim your yard
- Check screens and window coverings for tears or repairs
- Seal all windows and doors
- Create a light trap to draw them where you want them
- Keep lights off at night
- Use citrus oils and bay leaves to keep them away
If you find your home infested with ladybugs you can try vacuuming them out yourself. Be sure to remove the bag and dispose of it immediately. Ladybugs can also be killed with soapy water, but you must be fast as they can fly away quickly.