March Monthly Moos {Lady Beetle Invasion}

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Have you heard of the Asian Lady Beetle?  

If you saw one you would call it a ladybug.  I mean they look like a ladybug.  But, they are not red, cute or sweet.  They are brownish-orange, ugly and quite horrible.  And you rarely see one, sweet little bug.  You see hundreds upon hundreds.

The above picture is the window sill in our tack and feed shed.  

We've lived here for five years and I've tolerated them because oh, how I love the South.  And our farm.  And our life in the country.  And our lovely home.  But for some reason this spring, when these Lady Beetles are the thickest, they are just about to make me lose my mind.

Every single day, I vacuum.  Floors.  Windows.  Lights.  Because I have become rather obsessed with keeping trying to keep them out of my house.  (Obviously, from the picture above you can tell that I do not vacuum in our tack shed!)

Without doing any research on them,  here is what I know:

They stink.  You don't exactly notice it until your husband is out of town and to make the house not seem quite so big and lonely you decide to close the guest bedroom door... and open it a few days later to the worst rotten potato smell and realize it is the dead Ladybugs all over the floor, and the live ones on the ceiling and the window.

They bite.  You don't really realize this either until you try to brush one off your neck and you feel a strange sting.

They leave a yellow mark on a white wall.

You can vacuum them off the ceiling and 30 minutes later they are back.

And you continually ask yourself these questions:

Where do they come from?

What do they eat?

Why does it seem like they never die, but yet there are dead ones all over the floor every morning?

So, maybe to make myself feel better about them I began to do some research.

If you do a Google Image search on Ladybugs this is what you get:

Oh... don't they just give you a warm, cozy feeling?

But if you do a Google Image search on Asian Lady Beetles this is what you get:

Not so cozy, huh?

I found out all kinds of disturbing facts like this:

They were imported into the United States to help with the Aphid population.  (But there seems to be varying reports on whether they actually eat Aphids.)

They are considered to be one of the worlds most invasive insects.

They make use of pheromones to "call" each other - hence the huge pileups of them that we see everywhere here in Tennessee.

They have very good eyesight and will tend to go right back to where they were removed from.

Studies are being done on what parasite we can import to help eradicate them.  (Hmmmm.  Maybe Aphids?!)

They tend to be very attracted to light colored houses.  (I'm thinking we need to paint our farmhouse black.)

They can get into anything.  There is just about no way to seal a house up enough to keep them out.

They do not die out in cold weather; they find a place to hibernate and the very second the weather warms up in the Spring, they come out in abundance.

The result of all my reading is this:  I don't feel any better about the crazy things.  I actually feel worse.

And to make you feel worse too, I'll leave you with this video I took of the Ladybugs Asian Lady Beetles in the window sill of our tack shed.

Good night my friends.  I hope you sleep well!

P.S.  I promise a sweet, cozy, happy post soon about our darling calves on the farm!  Smile!


  1. I'm so glad you love the South enough to put up with the bugs. I certainly couldn't do it. Yes, scorpions are terrible, but we've had only about 10 in over 15 years in our house, so I don't lose sleep over them. Miss you dearly, friend! Love, Ginny V

  2. My goodness, Dori! I am sorry you have to deal with that. I haven't seen them yet, but I am sure they will eventually get here. I hate to hear about importing little pests to help us get rid of other little pests. All you end up with is new pests!

    You take care.

  3. Dori!!! This is how we have them here too!!! Country is far worse than in town. I have heard they live in bean fields, so when they start cutting bean in the fall they come out. We have learned to spray the outside of the window frames and foundation as soon as you see one in the fall. They will come to the house and die. There are SO many dead ones , we need to take a leaf blower to remove them from the porches! They are this thick in our sheds also! After learning to spray in the fall, they don't get into the house like they used to. BUT, this mild winter seems to be different. We have more than usual inside! As much as I hate using a chemical spray, it's all we can do to not loose your mind over these biting, horrible smelling bugs! Everyday I say.... WHOEVER BROUGHT THESE HERE...... And the end of that statement isn't very nice!!! I feel your pain!

  4. Dori, I thought Florida was the land of invasive and nasty bugs but this problem you have takes the cake! If you call a pest control service, could they get rid of them properly? Maybe set off a flea bomb in your shed? Let us know how you get rid of them as it sounds like others are also overwhelmed.

  5. We had these nasty little bugs at the farmhouse too, but never that bad! How awful!

  6. Feeling itchy now. I heard about them and reading and watching the video I feel more buggy. I was thinking about our mild winter too and what it'll entail later this summer, bug wise.
    Hope the invasion ends soon Dori, Kathleen in Az

  7. Ugh, aren't they horrible? In Michigan they invade in the late fall, and yes, there is no way to make your home secure against them. I don't even know how they get in every window. You would think you would feel the wind blowing through wherever they squeeze through. I think the darn things teleport! The only good thing is they do eventually go away. My thoughts are with you. :(

  8. I've read that sometimes they get in your animals mouths (on the roof of the mouth). It can make your dogs sick. I check Molly's mouth daily and she is an inside dog.

  9. Hot Shot has a hanging pest strip for flying insects and they work great! I hang them in the windows where the beetles "ladybugs" are the worst. They work great! Good luck. They are the worst!!

  10. What vile things! I am sorry that you have to deal with them and I certainly hope that you find something that works to get rid of them. Such things drive me bonkers, too.

  11. Oh my goodness, I'm so glad I'm not the only one fighting these "lovely" bugs. Here in Southwest Wisconsin we have them just as bad. It seems like I have the vacuum in my hand all the time, they are in the house and the barn. Not sure how to get rid of them either.

  12. Dori I found this blog post hope it helps!

    Will email also to be sure you read 😊

  13. I feel your pain ! I live in southern Indiana, and battle these bugs for the biggest part of the year !!!! Every year it gets worse.

  14. These horrible bugs ate my entire garden last year. It happened pretty much in a 48 hour period.