A Multicolored Asian Ladybird Beetle (Ladybug!)

Ladybug flying awayMost of us know that ladybugs are good insects. They are known for helping rid gardens and crops of insect pests, especially aphids.

Did you also know?

In medival Europe, people believed the ladybug was devinely sent from heaven to protect the crops. They called it "The Bug of our Lady" - a reference to the Virgin Mary. Over time, the name was shortened to ladybug.

As children, many of us sang a nursery rhyme that went like this:

"Ladybug, Ladybug, Fly Away Home. Your house is on fire, your children do roam. Except little Nan who sits in a pan, Weaving gold laces as fast as she can."

This verse started in ancient England as a warning to the ladybugs crawling on old hops vines. After harvest, farmers set fires to the vines to clean the fields. The adult ladybugs could fly away, the larvae could only crawl. The unfortunate pupa (Nan in the nursery rhyme) was fastened to the burning vines.

Ladybugs looking for overwintering sitesToday, many residents of southeastern Nebraska are finding ladybugs annoying as they move to overwintering sites. The offending ladybug is only one species - the Multicolored Asian Ladybird Beetle (shown above). This is not a native ladybug. It was introduced into the U.S. to help fight pests but it is also becoming a nuisance around homes in fall (see photo right) and even during warm sunny days during winter/spring. (And, you aren't imagining it - - they will give you an annoying and somewhat painful "nip".) Control involves sealing cracks and crevices BEFORE cold weather sets in.

This information was summarized from Ladybug, Ladybug, Fly Away Home by Barb Ogg, Extension Educator. This article appears in the September 2004 NEBLINE Newsletter.

Learn more and find Control Information HERE:

Ladybug, Ladybug, Fly Away Home (entire article - 54KB .pdf file)

Can You Guess It??

(this photo is featured in the October Nebline - Page 12)

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