This summer is affording us a lot of time to do some gardening. While gardeners look after plants, we also know it’s important to pay attention to the bugs we’re letting onto our property. As Columbus pest control experts, we at 1st Response Pest Management know a lot of people can confuse one lucky bug for a look-alike invasive species.
Why Are Asian Lady Beetles Considered Good Luck?
Gardeners like to see red bugs with spots crawling on the leaves of their garden because they assume these insects are ladybugs. Ladybugs eat smaller insects that could be bad for vegetation, such as aphids, mealy bugs, or spider mites. Unfortunately, these might not always be ladybugs, but a bug that looks like a ladybug. The Asian lady beetle is an imposter that doesn’t give much of the same benefits as their doppelgangers.
Some unfavorable qualities of Asian lady beetles are:
- They bite if they feel threatened.
- They gather in large numbers during the winter, often in houses.
- They emit an odorous yellow fluid that can stain walls and furniture.
- Some can feed on plants, not just insects.
While ladybugs stay outdoors during the summer, Asian lady beetles will infiltrate a house to hide away in the cold months. As a gardener, it can be concerning because the same things that attract ladybugs also attract Asian lady beetles. If you see them in your garden, they might appear in the house in winter.
The Difference Between Asian Lady Beetles And Ladybugs
It can be difficult to tell the difference between Asian lady beetles and ladybugs. Characteristics will be about the same across the board, except for a few key distinct differences. Asian lady beetles:
- Are a bit bigger
- Have a white mark on their heads in the shape of an “M”
- Can range in color. They can be yellow, orange, or red
- Have more spots
These differences might be hard to identify without a side-by-side comparison. But ladybugs tend to have a head that is completely black, or at least mostly black. Asian lady beetles, the ladybug look alike, can vary in color. So, if you see something that looks like an orange ladybug, you’ve found your culprit.
Asian Lady Beetle Infestation Of Structures
When the seasons change, a lot of insects hibernate or enter a state of dormancy. Ladybugs in house areas are rare, but Asian lady beetles like to go indoors to spend the colder months. When these pests begin their seasonal huddle outside, you might see them on the sunnier portions of your house. From there, they access the indoors via small cracks, broken screens, or gaps in window frames.
To prevent Asian lady beetles from entering your home, you can:
- Seal up cracks with caulking.
- Install new screen doors and window screens.
- Check the garden for Asian lady beetle populations.
Once inside, these invasive ladybug lookalikes can cause allergies or irritation by contaminating surfaces. They also stain walls, furniture, and clothes with their yellow fluid emissions. These emissions are accompanied by a foul smell, which is another reason they’re not likely welcome.
Total Pest Control Solutions For Columbus Residents
Asian lady beetles are one of many pests Columbus residents have to deal with on a daily basis. At 1st Response Pest Management, our values are in our name. We have people who can take your call at any hour of the day, any day of the week. Pests don’t wait to bother you, so we won't wait to help you out. If you’re experiencing any pest, we will handle it with prompt, effective pest control service tailored to your needs. Give us a call.